Flowers couple has roots at Northridge
MAY 17, 2014 6:37p ET
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -- Cal State Northridge represents more than just the place he got his first head coaching gig at the collegiate level. To Jason Flowers, it also is more than just the place he led the Matadors women's basketball team to their first NCAA Tournament as a member of the Big West Conference.
Although, just four years into his tenure, he's already developed serious roots there.
Flowers' son, Jayce, was born in April of 2010. Flowers was named head coach of the women's basketball team in June of that year. The next month, his wife, Tairia, was named the head softball coach at Cal State Northridge.
"This is, kind of, where our family started," Jason said. "It was a busy time but we hit the ground running."
If that time was busy, last season, certainly, was no walk in the park. As Jason was leading the Matadors to the NCAA tournament, the couple had their second child together --a daughter, Tristyn, now six months old. Jason has another daughter Jasmine, 16, from a previous relationship.
Two head coaches, married and working on the same campus is no doubt a unique situation but it's the roots that have been planted in Northridge that makes the situation even sweeter for the couple.
"For both of us to be head coaches is one thing and then for us to be able to do it at the same place and so close together it's almost like the Disney deal," Flowers said.
Before landing at Northridge, this love story began at UCLA where Tairia was a member of the softball team and Jason finished his collegiate career after transferring from UC Irvine.
"We met in college at UCLA out and about on campus," Tairia recalled.
"It wasn't even like that," Jason interjects.
His version of the story, a bit more elaborate, depicts he and a couple of friends pulling up at a party.
"I hear from a distance 'hey are you guys basketball players?' " Jason recalled. "So, I just ignore it and I keep going towards the party and my two buddies, they entertain the idea and so we kind of met that night and saw each other a lot on campus and went from there."
And now they're in Northridge living one of the most unique situations in the country. How unique? According to the Big West, the Flowers' are one of just two married couples who coach on the same campus of an NCAA Division I institution.
“To be able to spend so much time with family and be able to get our job done at a high level, for those to go hand in hand has been nothing less than a blessing.”
It has its perks being able to relate to one another not just as spouses but as coaches as well. As coaches, there is plenty that they love about one another. For Jason, it's how much his wife cares for her players. For Tairia, it's how decisive her husband is.
"He absolutely knows what he wants to do and is able to communicate that and the girls respond to what he does," Tairia said. "And not just his team, everybody. He comes to my field and my girls, he just has this personality that draws you in and I definitely admire that about him."
For as much as coaches preach "family" around the country, the Flowers' are living examples of it on the Northridge campus. That alone, makes the deal worthwhile for the both of them.
"To be able to spend so much time with family and be able to get our job done at a high level, for those to go hand in hand has been nothing less than a blessing," Jason said.