Daugherty out after 11 seasons as Huskies' coach
SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Washington Huskies on Sunday fired women's basketball coach June Daugherty, one day after her team lost in the first-round of the NCAA Tournament.
"We just need to have a positive buzz in our community about our team. And it just wasn't there," athletic director Todd Turner said, after he announced he would not renew the contracts of Daugherty or any of her assistants, including her husband, Mike, following her 11th season at UW.
Daugherty's teams made six NCAA Tournaments, but the final one ended Saturday when No. 11 seed Washington lost to sixth-seeded Iowa State 79-60. The Huskies went 18-12 in the regular season finished fourth in the Pac-10 at 11-7.
Daugherty was 191-139 (.579) at Washington, including 113-85 in the Pac-10.
In a statement released by the university, Daugherty thanked the team's supporters and players.
"It is disappointing that the University of Washington has chosen not to renew our contract," she said. "We were looking forward to coaching a talented group of returning players and the top 10 recruiting class we signed to play."
Before coming to Washington, Daugherty coached seven seasons at Boise State. She has a career record of 314-213 (.596) in 18 seasons.
Turner cited several factors in making the move.
Attendance at remodeled Hec Edmundson Pavilion decreased from almost 5,000 per game to just above 2,500 in five seasons.
In 2003, Washington posted its first 20-win regular season under Daugherty and led the Pac-10 in attendance with a school-record 4,981 fans per game. The Huskies tied for second in the league with their best conference record during Daugherty's tenure, 13-5. That team set a single-game attendance record when 8,408 fans saw Washington crush UCLA.
Turner also didn't like seeing top recruits from what he called a "fertile" home state leave. The latest was Regina Rogers, the star center from Chief Sealth High School in Seattle has committed to UCLA.
"Quite a few kids have left our state to play elsewhere .... That is troubling," Turner said.
He also said the Huskies should be producing more for what Washington is paying into the women's program. He noted "hundreds of thousands of dollars" spent to improve practice gyms, meeting rooms and training rooms for both the men's and women's teams and an increase in coaches' salaries.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press