Mickie DeMoss

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Mickie Faye DeMoss (born October 3, 1955) is an American college basketball coach and former player. She is the former women's head coach at the University of Florida and the University of Kentucky. She is also a former assistant coach at the University of Tennessee. DeMoss is currently an assistant coach of the WNBA's Indiana Fever.[1]

Early years[edit]

DeMoss was born in Delhi, Louisiana. After a standout high school career, she went to Louisiana Tech University, where she started at point guard for her final three years. Immediately after her graduation with a physical education degree in 1977, she began her coaching career as an assistant at Memphis State (now Memphis). In 1979, she became the first full-time women's basketball coach in the history of the University of Florida. After four seasons and a 45-68 record, she left to become an assistant at Auburn University under Joe Ciampi. In both of her seasons at Auburn, they made the NCAA Tournament. More importantly for the direction of her career, she established herself as a top-notch recruiter. In the four seasons (1985–1989) after she left Auburn, players she helped recruit gave the Lady Tigers a 119-13 record and went to two Final Fours.

Tennessee[edit]

In 1985, DeMoss was hired by Pat Summitt to be her top assistant at the University of Tennessee. During her 18 seasons in Knoxville, the Lady Vols went to 13 Final Fours and won six NCAA Women's Division I Basketball Championships. As at Auburn, she played a key role as a recruiter, this time as the official recruiting coordinator.

Kentucky[edit]

DeMoss returned to the head coaching ranks in 2003, taking on the job of head coach at the University of Kentucky. The Wildcats had fallen off considerably from their glory years of the early 1980s, when the then-LadyKats were regularly competing for Southeastern Conference (SEC) honors. In the two years before DeMoss came to Lexington, the Wildcats had won a total of 20 games. The Wildcats had averaged little over 1,000 in per-game attendance.

DeMoss's first priority upon arriving at Kentucky was recruiting; her first class there was widely considered to be one of the top 10 in the nation that year.[citation needed] Season ticket sales immediately went up to over 3,000, and the Wildcats led the nation in increased attendance that season, averaging nearly 5,200. Despite an 11-16[2] record in 2003-04, the team showed marked improvement, reducing their average margin of defeat in SEC play by nearly 9 points.

The following season the Wildcats went 18-16, compiling their first winning season since 1999–2000. They made a strong run in the 2005 Women's National Invitation Tournament, losing to West Virginia in the semifinals in double overtime.

DeMoss's breakthrough season with Kentucky proved to be the 2005-06 season. She entered her third season with one of the youngest teams in women's college basketball, with only one senior on the roster and nine freshmen and sophomores. The team ended up with the most conference wins in school history (nine), including a landmark 66-63 win over then top-ranked Tennessee at Rupp Arena on January 26, 2006, and the program's highest conference finish (fourth) since the 1980s. In the wake of this win, the team entered the national rankings for the first time since 1993. The Wildcats also made their first NCAA Tournament appearance in seven years, winning in the first round against Chattanooga before losing in the next round to Michigan State. After the season, DeMoss was named SEC Coach of the Year by both her fellow coaches and the Associated Press. Her record at Kentucky at the end of the season was 51-42.

The Wildcats, returning all five starters, were ranked 15th in the 2006-07 AP preseason poll, the first preseason ranking for Kentucky in the history of the AP women's poll.

On April 11, 2007, DeMoss held a press conference to announce her resignation, abruptly stating "After 30 years of coaching, I just want to step back and reassess what I want to do for the rest of my life.".[3] Four months later, she returned to coaching by taking the assistant position at Texas.[1]

Later Years[edit]

After leaving her head coaching position at Kentucky, DeMoss spent 3 seasons (2007/2008 through 2009/2010) as a University of Texas assistant coach under head coach Gail Goestenkors. In May of 2010, it was announced that DeMoss was returning to Tennessee as an assistant coach under Pat Summitt. [4]

On April 2, 2012, DeMoss announced she would leave the University of Tennessee and become an assistant coach for the WNBA's Indiana Fever.[5]

Head coaching record[edit]

SeasonTeamOverallConferenceStandingPostseason
Florida Gators (Southeastern Conference) (1979–1983)
1979–80Florida10–192–8
1980–81Florida11–170–8
1981–82Florida13–161–8
1982–83Florida11–161–7
Florida:45–684–31
Kentucky Wildcats (Southeastern Conference) (2003–2007)
2003–04Kentucky11–163–11
2004–05Kentucky18–164–10WNIT Semi-finals
2005–06Kentucky22–99–5NCAA Second Round
2006–07Kentucky20–146–8WNIT
Kentucky:71–5522–34
Total:116–123

      National champion         Conference regular season champion         Conference tournament champion
      Conference regular season and conference tournament champion       Conference division champion

References[edit]

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