INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) – Coaching her trademark shutdown defense with a roster that includes two All-Americans, South Carolina's Dawn Staley is the USBWA National Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season and third time in four seasons. Staley led the Gamecocks (34-0) to the SEC regular-season and tournament titles as they went the entire season ranked in the top spot of the Associated Press poll, only the third program to ever accomplish it.
Staley will formally receive the award at the upcoming USBWA College Basketball Awards Banquet in St. Louis on April 12, hosted by the Missouri Athletic Club. A member of both the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame (inducted in 2012) and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (2013), Staley just finished advancing South Carolina to its ninth straight Sweet 16 appearance and the program's 10th within its 12 trips to the NCAA Tournament under her guidance.
Her third National Coach of the Year honor comes on the heels of her 400th win at South Carolina with last Sunday’s 76-45 win over South Florida in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. South Carolina’s current 38-week streak atop the AP poll is the second longest in the history of the poll. Staley is now 34-8 in NCAA Tournament games with the Gamecocks and seeking a second consecutive national title that would make her program only the fourth to win back-to-back titles.
Sunday’s tournament win was another defensive show. South Carolina is fourth in the country in scoring defense (51.1 points per game) and second in field goal percentage defense (.314) with an offensive set that is seventh nationally, averaging 81.4 points per game and 10th in field goal percentage (.470). The Gamecocks’ offensive numbers at present outpace those of the 2022 National Championship team (70.9 ppg, .426 shooting). South Carolina leads the NCAA with 9.0 blocks per game and their 288 total blocks have already set the SEC single-season record.
Staley coached two USBWA All-Americans this season. Senior forward Aliyah Boston, the reigning Ann Meyers Drysdale Award winner from the USBWA, continued her stellar career with a fourth All-America honor and a third consecutive spot on the USBWA"s first team. Boston is now the two-time SEC Player of the Year and its four-time Defensive Player of the Year. Guard Zia Cooke made third team All-America with an All-SEC First Team honor in tow. The Gamecocks have had two USBWA All-Americans in three of the past four seasons.
Among South Carolina's other conference honors under Staley this season were senior guard Brea Beal joining Boston on the SEC All-Defensive Team, junior center Kamilla Cardoso earning the SEC Sixth Woman of the Year award and a spot on the All-SEC Second Team, and redshirt freshman guard Rave Johnson making the SEC’s All-Freshman Team.
The Gamecocks resume their national title quest on Saturday, taking on 4th-seeded UCLA in Greenville, S.C. in the Sweet 16.
The USBWA has selected a women's national coach of the year since the 1989-90 season. The award is voting on by the entire membership and is based on regular-season performance.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Malcolm Moran at 814-574-1485. For additional info about covering the awards banquet, contact Jim Wilson with the MAC (314-539-4488).
ALL-TIME USBWA NATIONAL COACHES OF THE YEAR
2022-23 Dawn Staley, South Carolina, 34-0
2021-22 Dawn Staley, South Carolina, 35-2
2020-21 Tara VanDerveer, Stanford, 31-2
2019-20 Dawn Staley, South Carolina, 32-1
2018-19 Kim Mulkey, Baylor, 37-1
2017-18 Vic Schaefer, Mississippi State, 37-2
2016-17 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 36-1
2015-16 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 38-0
2014-15 Courtney Banghart, Princeton, 31-1
2013-14 Muffet McGraw, Notre Dame, 37-1
2012-13 Muffet McGraw, Notre Dame, 35-2
2011-12 Kim Mulkey, Baylor, 40-0
2010-11 Kim Mulkey, Baylor, 34-3
2009-10 Connie Yori, Nebraska, 32-2
2008-09 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 39-0
2007-08 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 36-2
2006-07 Gail Goestenkors, Duke, 32-2
2005-06 Sylvia Hatchell, North Carolina, 33-2
2004-05 Pokey Chatman, LSU, 34-3
2003-04 Joe Curl, Houston, 28-4
2002-03 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 37-1
2001-02 Brenda Oldfield (Frese), Minnesota, 22-8
2000-01 Muffet McGraw, Notre Dame, 34-2
1999-00 Andy Landers, Georgia, 32-4
1998-99 Carolyn Peck, Purdue, 34-1
1997-98 Pat Summitt, Tennessee, 39-0
1996-97 Wendy Lary, Old Dominion, 34-2
1995-96 Leon Barmore, Louisiana Tech, 31-2
1994-95 Geno Auriemma, UConn, 35-0
1993-94 Ceal Barry, Colorado, 27-5
1992-93 Jim Foster, Vanderbilt, 30-3
1991-92 Christine Weller, Maryland, 25-6
1990-91 Debbie Ryan, Virginia, 31-3
1989-90 Tara VanDerveer, Stanford, 32-1