Auriemma Named USA Basketball National Coach Of The Year Along With Krzyzewski

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - In recognition of the USA's impressive, gold-medal performances at the men's and women's 2010 FIBA World Championships, USA Basketball has announced University of Connecticut head coach Geno Auriemma and Duke University's Mike Krzyzewski as co-recipients of the 2010 USA Basketball National Coach of the Year award. Having also been named the USA Basketball National Coach of the Year in 2008, 2007 and 2006, Krzyzewski becomes the only four-time recipient in the history of the award, while Auriemma is a first-time honoree. "It's a great honor," Auriemma said. "Looking at who the other coaches were this past year, it means even more. Certainly being mentioned with Coach K is a great honor, and I'm thrilled. I can't be more appreciative of the hard work my staff and players did during the World Championship." The USA women stood atop the World Championship podium for the first time since 2002, while the USA men earned their first gold at the Worlds since 1994. Additionally, Auriemma and Krzyzewski each captured a NCAA Championship in 2010. "USA Basketball and our national team players have been very fortunate to have such respected and renowned coaches," said Jim Tooley, USA Basketball Executive Director/CEO. "There are many challenges to molding a team and playing in a World Championship, and the results from this past summer were remarkable. Thanks to their leadership, dedication and expertise, the USA men and women won with impressive sportsmanship and superior teamwork." "I've played for Coach Auriemma for a number of years, and so playing for him during the World Championship was just a reminder of what a great coach he is," said USA tri-captain Sue Bird (Seattle Storm). "He is gifted at bringing out the best in individuals and even better at putting them together to form the best team. If anyone could get us to gel in such a short amount of time, I knew Coach Auriemma could do it." USA Basketball's National Coach of the Year award was established in 1996 to recognize a USA Basketball head coach who, during the year of the award, made significant impact on the success of individual athlete and team performance at the highest level of competition. The USA Basketball Board of Directors is responsible for selecting USA Basketball's annual coach, player and team of the year awards. Other previous winners include: Anne Donovan (2007, 2008); Gail Goestenkors (2005); Van Chancellor (2004, 2002); Larry Brown (2003, 1999); Jim Boeheim (2001); Nell Fortner (2000); Clem Haskins (1998); Mo McHone (1997); and Tara VanDerveer (1996). The BIG EAST currently has three of the last four USA Basketball Coach of the Year award winners guiding its teams. Along with Auriemma, Seton Hall head coach Anne Donovan won the award in 2007 and 2008.