Jeff Mittie to Host TCU/C-USA Coaches Clinic
Sept. 18, 2003
FORT WORTH, Texas
Lady Frog basketball Head Coach Jeff Mittie will host the TCU/C-USA Coaches Clinic Saturday, Oct. 11, from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. in Daniel-Meyer Coliseum. In addition to Mittie, four of Conference USA's top women's hoops coaches-Laurie Pirtle (Cincinnati), Katie Meier (Charlotte), Joe Curl (Houston) and Doug Bruno (DePaul)-will give instructional sessions. The clinic is open to all men's and women's coaches at all levels of competition.
"This year, we expanded our clinic to coincide with the C-USA Tournament," said Mittie. "It's a unique opportunity for the coaches that attend because included in the $75 registration fee is 10 tickets to the tournament. I believe this will be a great event to help promote our conference tournament."
Coaches who attend the clinic also have the opportunity to purchase 10 tickets to TCU's Jan. 2 home match-up with the six-time National Champion Tennessee Lady Volunteers for $70. Tip-off for the contest is slated for 7 p.m.
The Lady Frogs, who are entering their third year in C-USA, will host this season's conference tournament March 4-7. The top 12 teams from the regular season qualify to participate, with first-round byes awarded to the four squads with the best conference records. TCU won the regular season title in 2002 and then became the first school in league tourney history to win the tournament crown playing on four consecutive days last season.
The credentials each C-USA coach participating in the clinic holds are impressive. Four of the five guided their teams into the NCAA Tournament last year and three have been named C-USA Coach of the Year. Mittie claimed the recognition in the Purple and White's inaugural campaign with the league. It was back-to-back kudos for TCU's all-time winningest coach, as Mittie snagged the prize from the Western Athletic Conference the year before. The Blue Springs, Mo., native also won conference Coach of the Year praise in two of his three years with Missouri Western in 1994 and 1995. Mittie has led the Lady Frogs to three straight 20-win seasons and a trio of NCAA Tournament Second Round showings. He owns a career coaching record of 236-102 (.698) in 11 seasons and is 85-43 (.664) in his four years with TCU.
The Cincinnati Bearcats' Pirtle begins her 18th season as head coach at UC and her 22nd overall. A 1980 graduate of Ohio State, Pirtle has 337 career victories, 254 of which have come at Cincinnati. Pirtle has seven conference Coach of the Year awards to her credit, with the last such honor coming in 1999 when she helped the Bearcats win a share of the regular season C-USA title and post a runner-up finish in the tournament. In 2002, Pirtle's squad won its first C-USA Tournament trophy and reached round two of the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history.
Meier of Charlotte was named C-USA Coach of the Year last season after leading the 49ers to their first C-USA title of any kind. The Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) also tabbed Meier its Region IV Coach of the Year in 2003. A former Kodak/WBCA District II All-America selection during her playing days at Duke, Meier took Charlotte to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history in only her second year as a head coach last season en route to a 21-9 record.
Houston's Curl will begin his sixth season as head coach of the Cougars this season. Under his leadership, Houston has averaged 20 wins in each of the last three years and earned two postseason berths to the WNIT. In 2002, the Cougars narrowly missed winning the WNIT Championship, falling by a 54-52 count to Oregon in the title bout. Under Curl's guidance, senior Chandi Jones has been named C-USA Player of the Year the past two seasons, while classmate Nicole Oliver garnered C-USA Defensive Player of the Year acclaim in 2002.
Bruno will begin his 20th season of head coaching this season and his 18th at the helm of the DePaul Blue Demons. The veteran has 339 wins to his credit and is one triumph shy of 300 at DePaul. Since Bruno's tenure with his alma mater, the Blue Demons have earned eight NCAA Tournament bids and made 12 postseason appearances the past 15 years. In three of the past five seasons, one of Bruno's pupils has claimed C-USA's Student-Athlete of the Year award for women's basketball. Collectively, 65 players have captured conference academic honors under Bruno's tutelage.
Coaches interesting in attending the TCU/C-USA Coaches Clinic may contact TCU women's basketball administrative assistant Jodi Christian at (817) 257-7962.