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Houston Comets Memorabilia Collection

Identifier: 2001-010

This collection is housed in 9 boxes and organized into 5 series. The content of the collection consists of Houston Comets memorabilia documenting their four WNBA championship wins from years 1997 to 2000. In addition, general Houston Comets novelty items can be found in this collection dating from the years 1997 to 2003.


  • 1997-2003


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Special Collections owns the physical items in our collections, but copyright normally belongs to the creator of the materials or their heirs. The researcher has full responsibility for determining copyright status, obtaining permission to publish from copyright holders, and abiding by current copyright laws when publishing or displaying copies of Special Collections material in print or electronic form. For more information, consult the appropriate librarian. Reproduction decisions will be made by Special Collections staff on a case-by-case basis.


12.00 linear feet

Historical Information

The Houston Comets was a Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) team based in Houston, Texas. They were formed in 1997, which was the inaugural season of the WNBA and were one of the original eight WNBA teams. The Comets were the first dynasty of the WNBA and they won more championships than any other team in the WNBA under the reigns of Head Coach Van Chancellor. They began as the sister team of the Houston Rockets under the ownership of Alexander Leslie from 1997 to 2006.

From 1997 to 2000, the Comets dominated the WNBA as they won all four championships in the first four years of the league's existence with the leadership of Cynthia Cooper, Sheryl Swoopes and Tina Thompson who were referred to as the "Big Three." The Comets were known for courting great women's basketball stars in addition to the "Big Three" such as Kim Perrot, who succumbed to cancer in 1999 and college star Michelle Snow.

Unfortunately, the Comets failed to make another WNBA Finals appearance after their 2000 Championship season. Changes in the roster, coaching staff, ownership and playing arena prompted the demise of the Comets Franchise. In 2001, 2-time league MVP Cynthia Cooper retired, and in 2007, Chancellor resigned as Head Coach and Alexander sold the Franchise to Hilton Koch. Chancellor was replaced by Assistant Coach, Karleen Thompson; and shortly thereafter, the team moved from playing its home games at the Toyota Center to Reliant Arena. Given these changes over the span of seven years, the Comets struggled greatly as they only moved past the First Round of the playoffs once, which was in their 2005 season, and they failed to make the playoffs 3 out of their last eight seasons. Due to this hardship, Koch put the team up from sale in 2008, but didn't receive any offers from investors. Consequently, the team fell under the management of the WNBA and was disbanded in the same year.

Guide to the Houston Comets Memorabilia Collection
Sharleen Guide
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Houston Libraries Special Collections Repository

University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
MD Anderson Library
4333 University Drive
Houston TX 77204-2000 USA