The Shockers' offense showed immense improvement in 2014 under Ricketts' guidance, as the team posted a .314/56/291 statistical line. Sophomore transfer Cacy Williams had an excellent season leading the squad offensively, with a .424 average and fifteen home runs.
Ricketts' own playing career was a stellar one, as she ended her career with her name scrawled throughout the Sooner record books. A multi-time All-American, Ricketts also was a top-three finalist for National Player of the Year in 2007. She was the 12th-overall pick by the Racers in the 2009 draft.
Samantha is the oldest of three Ricketts sisters, a trio that have combined to make Ricketts one of the most well-known names in softball in recent years. Middle sister Stephanie enjoyed a multi-sport career at the University of Hawaii, starring in softball for four seasons and playing women's basketball as a fifth-year senior. Youngest sister Keilani was without a doubt one of the greatest players in recent memory during her own career at Oklahoma, and she continues that career in the present day at the professional level with the USSSA Pride in the NPF and Shokki Softball in Japan.
Samantha replaces Beth Mullins at MSU, after Mullins left Starkville to become head softball coach at Troy. The Bulldogs finished the 2014 season with a 39-21 record and the #10 seed in the conference tournament. They were assigned to the Lafayette regional and were eliminated there with a 1-2 record.