Tajama Ngongba, former GW standout and WNBA player, is in her fourth year as an assistant coach at her alma mater. She rejoined Coach McKeown's staff in 2004 after serving as GW's administrative assistant from 1999 to 2001. During her nine-year association with the program, which includes three Sweet 16 appearances, Ngongba has been part of 225 victories, an average of 25 per season and more than half of McKeown's 414 wins in his 18 years with the Colonials.
Ngongba's primary responsibilities include recruiting, scouting, team academics, postseason workouts and player development, with emphasis on post play. As a recruiter, Ngongba identifies quality prospects and makes scholarship recommendations to the coaching staff. On the court, Ngongba has been instrumental in the development of Atlantic 10 First Team All-Conference post players Jessica Adair, Jessica Simmonds and Anna Montanana. She also has mentored and coached current GW honorable mention All-American Kimberly Beck, all-conference performer Sarah-Jo Lawrence and Academic All-American Kenan Cole.
Prior to her return to GW in June 2004, Ngongba served as an assistant coach at Virginia Commonwealth University for two seasons. At VCU, Ngongba was responsible for recruiting, development of post players, scouting and organizing the team's preseason and summer conditioning workouts. In her two years, Ngongba helped land one of Rams' head coach Beth Cunningham's best recruiting classes, which included 2006 Colonial Athletic Association Rookie of the Year Quanitra Hollingsworth. In 2003-04, Ngongba helped guide VCU to a 10-8 conference record and an upset of third-seeded Hofstra in the CAA Tournament.
Ngongba spent the 2001-02 season as an assistant on Bob Foley's staff at Atlantic-10 rival Richmond. She helped the Spiders to an 8-8 mark and a second-place tie in the West Division in the program's inaugural A-10 season. Ngongba tutored Third Team All-Atlantic 10 center Ebony Tanner and All-Rookie Team forward Kate Flavin, both of whom went on to earn all-conference honors following Ngongba's hire at VCU.
Before arriving at Richmond, Ngongba was a member of the coaching staff that helped the U.S. Virgin Islands Women's Junior National Team to a gold medal in the 2001 Caricom Junior Basketball Championships in Nassau, Bahamas. Aside from her role as assistant coach for the Junior National Team, Ngongba also served as team captain for the U.S. Virgin Islands Women's Senior National Team.
The most prolific scorer in GW women's basketball history, Ngongba tallied a school-record 2,134 points during her four-year career and is the only Colonial to eclipse the 2,000 career-point mark. Ngongba was named a Kodak first-team All-American as a senior in 1997 after leading the Colonials to a 28-6 record and the East Regional Final in the NCAA Tournament. She was named to the 1997 East Regional All-Tournament Team after GW defeated No. 4 North Carolina to advance to the Elite Eight. Ngongba was also a Kodak Honorable Mention All-American and a Basketball Times Honorable Mention All-America selection as a junior in 1996. Ngongba earned the 1997 Atlantic 10 Conference Player of the Year Award and was the conference's Rookie of the Year in 1994. She was a unanimous first-team all-league selection in 1996 and 1997 and earned second-team all-conference honors in 1995. Ngongba was selected to the Atlantic 10 All-Tournament Team in 1997 and was the tournament's MVP in 1996 when GW claimed the A-10 crown.
In addition to her school-record 2,134 points, Ngongba holds the school mark for the most points in one season (675 in 1996-97) and is tied with former GW assistant coach Lisa Cermignano for the most games played (130). She ranks second at GW in career scoring average (16.4 points per game), rebounds (970) and blocked shots (326).
After graduating in 1997, Ngongba was drafted with the seventh pick in the fourth round of the inaugural WNBA draft by the Sacramento Monarchs. Ngongba spent the 1997 season with the Monarchs before joining the Detroit Shock for the 1998 campaign. Ngongba traveled to Nice, France, for the 1998-99 season before joining McKeown's staff at GW in October 1999, as administrative assistant.
Ngongba became the sixth player and the seventh individual with ties to the women's basketball program to be inducted into the GW Athletics Hall of Fame on January 24, 2004. She married former GW men's basketball player Patrick Ngongba in 2003 and the couple has a daughter, Naja, and son, Patrick II.