Women's Hoops Blog

Inane commentary on a game that deserves far better

Monday, March 30, 2009

It's amazing how much influence we at the Women's Hoops Blog have! From the WBCA:

The Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) has selected Ball State’s Kelly Packard as the recipient of the 2009 Maggie Dixon Division I Rookie Coach of the Year award. This distinguished award honors a WBCA Division I head coach who has lead their team to a successful season during their first year at the helm.

“We would like to honor Kelly Packard with this year’s Maggie Dixon award as she has elevated Ball State University to new levels in just her first year,” said WBCA CEO Beth Bass. “We had a terrific pool of first-year head coaches, but Kelly Packard stood out above the rest, and we wish her much success at Ball State in the future.”

Packard became the first coach in Ball State’s women basketball history to win 26 games in a rookie season. She led the Cardinals to their best ever overall and home records, 26-9 and 14-1, respectively. Ball State also had its best Mid-America Conference showing, turning in a 14-2 ledger. Packard coached senior guard Porchia Green to MAC First Team All-MAC and Defensive Player of the Year honors.

In just her first season, Packard guided Ball State to its third straight Mid-American Conference West Division title, its first MAC Tournament title and first NCAA Tournament berth. The Cardinals went on to earn the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament first round victory when it topped defending national champions, the University of Tennessee, 71-55. With the win, Ball State captured its 12th straight victory and tied the school record for the longest win streak in program history.