Becky Burke named women’s basketball coach

UB has named Becky Burke as its next women’s head basketball coach, the school announced in a Press release Wednesday.

Burke joins UB from the University of South Carolina Upstate, where she was named the 2022 Big South Coach of the Year. Last season, the USC Upstate set program records for victories (22) and conference victories (14) in one season.

The Spartans saw an improvement of 14 games over the previous season and finished as the No. 3 seed in the Big South Tournament after being expected to finish as No. 10 in the conference.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Becky Burke to our UB family,” UB Athletic Director Mark Alnutt said in the announcement. “Through this search process, she quickly distinguished herself from the other candidates by showing an infectious passion for the sport, a strong work ethic and a competitive character, while creating genuine relationships with her student-athletes while preparing them for success both on and off. for the course.

“She formulated a vision for this program that will build on the success we’ve had and continue to make our brand nationally recognized as a leading basketball program. Becky is a rising star in our industry and a proven winner, which is very clearly at all her previous stops. University at Buffalo women’s basketball is in very good hands for years to come. “

Prior to training at USC Upstate, Burke was the head coach at the University of Charleston in West Virginia and at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, AZ – both Division II programs. She led Charleston to a top-25 appearance and was responsible for helping launch the women’s basketball program at ERAU.

Burke enjoyed a unique playing career in Louisville, helping the Cardinals play three NCAA tournaments, including the Sweet Sixteen in 2011 and the 2009 National Championship game.

“I want to thank Mark Alnutt, President Tripathi and the rest of the search committee for trusting me to be the next head coach here at the University of Buffalo,” Burke said in the announcement. “From the start of this process, Mark and my vision for the women’s basketball program at UB have fit together perfectly. This program has been built under the leadership of Coach Legette-Jack into a dominant program in MAC with national respect.

“I am fully committed to keeping it that way and becoming the premiere destination for some of the best players in the country. We will be proud to continue to raise the bar on the pitch, but also to be good representatives of this university and the city of Buffalo. “Again, I am humbled and so grateful for this opportunity and can not wait to get on campus.”

The Burke appointment comes after former UB head coach Felisha Legette-Jack accepted the same position at Syracuse University on March 26. Legette-Jack had coached the Bulls for 10 seasons, leading them to three MAC titles and four NCAA tournaments – including the 2018 Sweet Sixteen.

Burke will have to figure out how to replace a number of key contributors to last season’s March Madness team, including junior guard Dyaisha Fair, who entered the transfer portal after finishing fourth in the nation in scoring, and reigning MAC Freshman of the Year Georgia Woolley, who moved to Syracuse to be reunited with Legette-Jack.

Alnutt outlined a two to three week schedule to fill UB’s coaching position; Burke’s employment was announced 11 days inside that schedule.

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An introductory press conference is scheduled for Friday noon at the Alumni Arena.

Anthony DeCicco is a senior sports editor and can be contacted at anthony.decicco@ubspectrum.com and @ DeCicco42 on Twitter


ANTHONY DECICCO

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Anthony DeCicco is a senior sports editor at The spectrum. In his spare time, he can be found by playing video games, watching 90s Knicks matches and arguing with people on NBA Twitter at.

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