IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder has been named a United States Marine Corps/WBCA Regional Coach of the Year, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced Thursday. It is the third regional coach of the year honor of Bluder’s Iowa career (2001 and 2008).
This season, Bluder led Iowa to its 25th NCAA Tournament appearance. She has guided the Hawkeyes to 17 postseason appearances (13 NCAA and four WNIT) in her 18 seasons at Iowa, including NCAA Tournament berths in nine of the last 11 seasons. The Hawkeyes have advanced to the postseason in 11 consecutive seasons (nine NCAA and two WNIT).
Bluder guided the Hawkeyes to a 24-8 overall record and a third-place finish in the Big Ten Conference (11-5), overcoming injuries to three different starters throughout the season. Iowa’s 24 wins marked the most for the program since tallying 26 in 2014-15. Iowa has registered 11 20-win seasons under Bluder.
On Nov. 10, 2017, Bluder collected her 700th career victory. She is one-of-10 active Division I head coaches with 700 or more victories and one-of-29 women’s coaches to ever accomplish the feat. Bluder is one of 80 coaches (men or women) to win 700 or more contests.
Junior Megan Gustafson became the sixth player during Bluder’s tenure to earn WBCA all-region team accolades. Gustafson was named an All-American by Sports Illustrated (first team), USA Today (second team), College Sports Madness (second team), and ESPNW (third team).
Bluder guided two players to All-Big Ten accolades this season. Gustafson was named the 2018 Big Ten Player of the Year (media) and was a unanimous first team selection, while sophomore Kathleen Doyle earned second team All-Big Ten honors from the league’s coaches and honorable mention accolades from the media.
Bluder is one of 10 Regional Coaches of the Year. Vic Schaefer of Mississippi State was named the WBCA National Coach of the Year.