LOS ANGELES -- Basketball Hall of Famer Cynthia Cooper-Dyke, who as a player helped lead USC to a pair of NCAA championships before winning an Olympic gold medal and four WNBA titles, was named head coach of the USC women’s basketball program, Trojan athletic director Pat Haden announced today (April 11).
Anne Donovan will be the first head coach of the Connecticut Sun’s post-Mike Thibault era, the organization announced today. Donovan, currently head coach of women’s basketball at Seton Hall University, will finish out the 2012-2013 season before taking up her duties with the Sun.
The sun had barely set on the franchise’s worst year since its debut season in the league -- and Trudi Lacey’s second sub-.200 season in a row -- before the front office gave Lacey the boot.
That’s something they’ve had plenty of practice at: Washington has run through an even dozen head coaches in its 15 years as a WNBA franchise. The longest tenure was that of Richie Adubato, who spent three seasons at the helm on the rebound from his time with the New York Liberty, but the mean has been a little more than a year.
Coaches Gary Blair (Texas A&M) and Jim Foster (Ohio State) and players Peggy Gillom (Ole Miss), Jen Rizzotti (Connecticut), Anne Smith-Knight (Texas) and Sue Wicks (Rutgers) were introduced on Monday as the 2013 Class of Inductees to the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame during the halftime of the USA versus Brazil exhibition game at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C.
Mike Petersen has resigned as Wake Forest head women’s basketball coach to become the seventh head coach at The University of North Texas, Wake Forest announced on Monday, March 16.
“Mike Petersen recently was approached by the University of North Texas and given the opportunity to become its women’s basketball head coach. Mike has been with Wake Forest for eight years and has been a trusted and valued colleague and friend. He has added much to our department in so many ways and we will miss his ideas, humor and friendship”
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (BGSU Athletic Communications) – Bowling Green State University looked within to fill the vacancy created by the departure of women's basketball head coach Curt Miller, a six-time Mid-American Conference Coach of the Year, who was tapped to take the reins at Indiana on March 28 of this year.
Eastern Michigan University Head Women's Basketball Coach AnnMarie Gilbert has announced her decision to resign, effective Friday, April 6, 2012.
“I would like to thank AnnMarie for the success she has brought the program,” said Dr. Derrick Gragg, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. “AnnMarie has worked hard to help our student athletes succeed, and I wish her well in her future endeavors.”
The Los Angeles Sparks have named Jennifer Gillom as their new head coach, succeeding Michael Cooper who left to take the reins at the University of Southern California, the team announced Monday. Meanwhile, Minnesota has hired former Detroit Shock general manager and assistant coach Cheryl Reeve to fill Gillom's former job at the coaching helm of the Lynx, that team announced last week.
Gillom, who was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame earlier this year, starred at the University of Mississippi under Van Chancellor who later became the first coach of the Houston Comets. A Kodak All-American, Gillom is the second all-time scoring leader at Ole Miss, her 2,186 career points second only to her sister Peggie.
After graduation, Gillom played professionally overseas, primarily in Italy, with stints in Greece, Spain and Turkey. Gillom then went on to a seven-year career as a player in the WNBA. Her best years came early in that career, with Gillom reaching her career-high in 1998, when she finished with an average of 20.8 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Though most of her career was spent with the Phoenix Mercury, she played her final season, 2003, with the Sparks. Unfortunately, that year was one of decline, as Gillom retired with a career average that had dropped to 13.4 points and 4.5 rebounds per game.
"I am extremely excited to return to the city of Los Angeles and begin this new journey as head coach of the Sparks," said Gillom. "This is a storied franchise with a championship caliber team. I look forward to being part of the future success and am eager to continue building the Sparks legacy."
Gillom won five gold medals, including a gold from the 1988 Olympics, and one silver as a player for USA Basketball, and was named the 1985 USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year. In addition to her '88 Olympic gold, she owns golds from the 1986 and 2002 World Championships, and took golds at the 1987 Pan American Games and the 1986 Goodwill Games; her silver came from the 1986 World University Games.
Gillom was tapped this summer to serve as an assistant to storied coach Geno Auriemma, who is heading the 2010 Women's World Championship and 2012 London Olympics teams.
Gillom began her coaching career in 2004 with the girls' basketball team at Xavier College Preparatory, an all-girls Catholic high school in Phoenix, Arizona, where she compiled a 130-25 record in five seasons. Under her leadership, her high school Gators have annually advanced to the state tournament for the past four years, and Gillom has received regional coach-of-the-year honors in each of those years.
But her coaching experience in the pros is limited to say the least. Gillom served as an assistant coach for the Minnesota Lynx in 2008. She was elevated to the position of interim head coach for the Lynx last year after Don Zierden abruptly resigned to join Flip Saunders' staff with the NBA's Washington Wizards three days before the start of the season.
The Lynx got off to a strong start under Gillom's tutelage, and were 4-1 when marquee player Seimone Augustus went down to a season-ending ACL tear on June 17 just six games into the season. The Lynx held on for the next two weeks, pulling out three more wins against two additional losses in the month of June, but without Augustus, Minnesota soon unraveled, going on a six-game losing streak and finishing a disappointing 14-20.
Perhaps as a result of that shaky head coaching debut, Minnesota bypassed Gillom in favor of former Detroit assistant coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve. The Lynx formally announced Reeve's appointment as head coach last week, though the move has been rumored for weeks now.
Two more disparate resumes would be difficult to imagine. Reeve has 21 years of coaching experience, including five years as an assistant coach at George Washington, and five years as head coach at Indiana State from 1995-2000, where she led the team to its first postseason appearance in 20 years at the culmination of the 1998-99 season. Reeve has spent nine years in the WNBA as an assistant to various teams, launching her her coaching career in the pros in 2001 as an assistant to Anne Donovan with the Charlotte Sting. In Reeve's first year with the team, the Sting improved to 18-14 from the previous year's record of 8-24, and advanced to the WNBA Finals appearance. The following year, the Sting repeated their 18-14 record, and made another post-season appearance.
After Donovan left the Sting at the end of 2002 to become head coach of the Seattle Storm, Reeve moved to the Cleveland Rockers, apprenticing under Dan Hughes. The Rockers also advanced to the playoffs that year, but the ownership pulled the plug on the franchise at the end of the season. Reeve returned to the Sting staff, again as an assistant, for the 2004 and 2005 seasons.
From 2006-2009, Reeve served as assistant coach of the Detroit Shock under Bill Laimbeer, whom she helped guide the Shock to their 2006 and 2008 WNBA championships. Last year, after Laimbeer's departure, Reeve served as an assistant on the sidelines to Rick Mahorn, while at the same time assuming Laimbeer's duties as the Shock's general manager. Laimbeer, who is now an assistant with the Minnesota Timberwolves, is said to have given Reeve a glowing recommendation for the Lynx head coaching job.
Reeve played at LaSalle in the 1980s, and a graduate position at LaSalle was her first coaching position. But Reeve never played professional ball.