Women’s Iowa basketball coach Lisa Bluder has done an outstanding job this season. Today she was named a semifinalist for a prestigious award.
Head coach Lisa Bluder has done an outstanding job in her tenure as the women’s Iowa basketball coach since taking over the position at the beginning of this century, but this year the Hawks are possibly on another level.
Led by senior All-American and potential National Player of the Year candidate Megan Gustafson, the Iowa basketball team has jumped out to a 21-6 record, and they are currently ranked 12th in the nation and 2nd in the Big Ten Conference.
With just one regular season contest remaining, the women are expected to finish the regular season 22-6 and head into the Big Ten Conference as one of the favorites to win the conference tournament before embarking on an (what is hopefully a long) NCAA Tournament run.
If the Hawks are able to advance to the the Elite Eight or even the Final Four for the first time since 1993, Lisa Bluder could be taking home some national recognition in addition to some hardware.
Today, Bluder was named 1 of 15 nominees for the Naismith Women’s College Coach of the Year.
If Bluder is able to win this, it would be the first time in her fantastic head coaching career, and it would fit nicely among her hardware collection, which includes being named three-time Big Ten Coach of the Year and two-time Regional Coach of the Year.
She does face stiff competition, and as many of these awards do, this will likely come down to how far each of these teams advance in the NCAA Tournament. As it stands, the top seven teams in the nation have coaches on the list, and only two coaches are not coaching top-25 teams (Utah and Clemson).
A deep run into March would not just benefit Bluder though. It could likely seal the deal for Gustafson to stake her claim on National Player of the Year honors as well.