BOULDER, Colo. -- Ceal Barry, the winningest coach in the history of the University of Colorado, said Thursday she will step down after the end of her worst season in 22 years at the school.
Barry will remain at the school as an assistant athletics
The announcement came after the Buffaloes lost their
school-record 10th game in row, 80-43 at No. 13 Texas.
Barry entered this season with a career record of 501-265, which
includes four years at Cincinnati. She began this season 418-223 as
the Buffs' head coach and her résumé here includes 13 20-win
seasons, 12 trips to the NCAA tournament, six visits to the Sweet
16 and three appearances in the Elite Eight.
She has also worked for USA Basketball on several occasions,
including coaching last summer's junior world qualifying team to a
gold medal. She was an assistant on the U.S. women's gold-medal
winning team in 1996 and the national coach of the year in 1994.
The Buffs were in the Elite Eight three years ago, but
graduation losses and the transfers of players including Emily
Waner and Amber Metoyer have hurt. Colorado is 8-17 this season and
just 1-13 in the Big 12 Conference.
Last spring, Waner left school to play basketball with her
sister, Abby, at Duke. Metoyer left for Louisiana Tech. At the
time, Barry said she was "extremely saddened and disappointed by
Emily and Amber's decisions.''
Colorado hosts Baylor (No. 8 ESPN/USA Today, No. 6 AP) on Saturday and finishes the regular
season next week at home against NCAA tournament-bound Nebraska. On
Tuesday, Barry noted Colorado's notoriously low fan attendance: The
Buffs average 1,983 per home game while Big 12 foes Kansas State
and Texas Tech can boast 10,000.
"Attendance hurts you more than anything,'' she said. "If we
were 1-15 and we played in front of 9,000 -- that's what's hurt us
in the Big 12. Our record's been better than K-State's the last
four years, not counting this year, but K-State can walk in the
door and say, 'You're going to play in front of 10,000' and we
can't say that. That kills you.''