Mary Wise Could Become First Female Head Coach To Win NCAA DI Title

  0 Carly DeMarque | December 15th, 2017 | College - Women's Indoor, News, SEC

It’s 2017 and there is a real chance that Florida’s Mary Wise could become the first female coach to win the NCAA Tournament.

It is not the first time that Wise has been in this position in her career, as the Gators made it to the finals in 2003, with this year being the first time they have reentered this realm in 14 years. This is even the first season since 2003 that Florida has made it as far as the Final Four but is their eighth overall.

Wise’s group making the finals in 2003 made her the first female head coach to make the finals match in the tournament. Additionally, Wise is the only female in Division I history to reach multiple Division I national semifinal matches.

The Gators ended the regular-season with a 25-1 record, losing just once to Kentucky during SEC play. They were the SEC co-champions this season with Kentucky and gained the #2 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Wise has had a great career with the Gators, having won her 800th match with Florida and her 900th in her career – making her the third female head coach in the NCAA (across all three divisions) to reach the 900-win mark now making her the winningest female coach in NCAA Division I history. Additionally, she has coached the Gators to 27 consecutive 25-win seasons, which is the longest active streak in the nation by 11 years.

At the AVCA Convention, that is in conjunction with the NCAA Tournament, Wise was named as the AVCA Division I Coach of the Year. This is the third time that Wise has garnered the award, with her first in 1992 and again in 1996. She joins Penn State’s Russ Rose (five-time winner) in accomplishing three or more AVCA Coach of the Year honors.

Road to the Finals

  • Alabama State (3-0)
  • Miami (FL) (3-1)
  • #17 UCLA (3-1)
  • #14 USC (3-2)
  • #4 Stanford (3-2)

The Gator’s semifinal match was a tough battle to get through, with it looking like Stanford had gained enough momentum to make a comeback after Florida went up 2-0 in the match. Stanford forced the fifth set but the Gators took charge to win 15-10 and claim their spot in the finals.

Up next, the Gators will take on Nebraska, who is no stranger to the NCAA Final Four and finals match itself, having four titles in school’s history.

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About Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque has been involved with competitive volleyball for the majority of her life, playing competitively at the club and collegiate level for 15 years and coaching club for five. Now a retired Division I volleyball athlete out of McNeese State University, she continues her volleyball enthusiasm by stepping back into …

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