Washington State University Head Coach June Daugherty enters her sixth season with Cougars and has led the charge toward a new era in WSU women's basketball. Just as she had done at each of her two previous stops, Daugherty, who has coached more than 600 career games, has begun turning around the WSU women's program, bringing in top-ranked recruiting classes, improving attendance numbers and overseeing student-athletes who place premiums on academics and community service.
Last season, Daugherty led the Cougars to one of the most successful campaigns in program history while playing one of the toughest schedules in the country (No. 27). WSU posted the most wins since 1995-96, recording 13 overall victories and their second double-digit win season under Daugherty while improving their final RPI by 50 spots from a season ago. The Cougars saved its best for last, beating UCLA the final weekend of the regular season before posting the program's inaugural wins at the conference tournament. WSU knocked off Oregon State and USC in the first two rounds to advance to the nationally televised semifinal against California held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Additionally, Daugherty led the Cougs to the program's inaugural win over a Big Ten Conference opponent (Wisconsin) and WSU's first win over a Big East Conference opponent (Marquette) in over 20 years. Daugherty's team followed nonconference play by winning its first three games (at Oregon, at Oregon State, Utah) of Pac-12 play for the first time since 1977-78. The 2011-12 Cougars made their mark on the record book, posting the most rebounds, the sixth-most points, fourth-most threes, fifth-most assists and second-most assists in WSU single-season history.
Last season also saw Daugherty's first WSU recruiting class cap their impressive careers as a pair of 1,000-point scorers exited along with a three-time academic all-conference selection in addition to the three players who received invites to the WNBA combine. Headlining the group was guard Jazmine Perkins who finished her career as a three-time all-conference selection and WSU's all-time leader in games played and the first player in school-history, male or female, with 1,200+ points, 700+ rebounds and 250+ steals.
In year one, Daugherty instilled excitement around Cougar women's basketball, signing the nation's 16th-ranked recruiting class (Blue Star Basketball). The class also received a top-25 nod from HoopGurlz (No. 24), ranked second in the Pacific-10 Conference and was unquestionably the greatest signing class in school history. Fans' excitement translated into a packed Beasley Coliseum, as WSU more than tripled its attendance from the previous season.
In year two, Daugherty guided the Cougars to an eighth-place finish in the Pac-10, WSU's highest ranking in the conference since also finishing eighth in 1998-99, and the team posted double-digit wins for the first time since the 2000-01 season. Daugherty also followed the most heralded recruiting class in school history with another highly-ranked class in 2008-09.
Following 2008-09, the Cougars ranked among the nation's top 30 teams in both increasing their win total and increasing their RPI ranking. During the regular season the Cougars won six more games than the previous season, ranking 26th nationally and second in the Pac-10 amongst teams making the greatest turnarounds. WSU also moved up 83 spots in the RPI from the previous season, the second-highest increase amongst Pac-10 teams, and tied for the 28th-highest jump nationally.
In 2009-10, the Cougars started to make their move. Despite having the sixth-youngest team in the country, WSU started earning wins and accolades that hadn't been seen in Pullman for years. The Cougars defeated Arizona State in Tempe, Ariz., in front of a national television audience, their first road win over the Sun Devils in more than 13 years. WSU also defeated USC at Galen Center, the team's first road win over the Trojans in more than 11 years.
Individually, following a 33-point scoring barrage against ASU, guard April Cook garnered WSU's first Pac-10 Player of the Week honor in four years, and just the second by a Cougar in the last 13 years. Then-freshman Carly Noyes broke WSU's single-season blocks record, a mark that had stood for 25 years, and became the first player in school history to lead the Pac-10 in the statistical category.
Daugherty also signed her third-straight nationally-ranked recruiting class, and if recent history is any indication, greatness should be expected from the get-go. Multiple players from each of her first three signing classes garnered postseason recognition by Pac-10 coaches and media members following their debut seasons.
2010-11 saw the Cougars take another step forward under Daugherty's guidance while playing the No. 27 toughest schedule in the country. WSU posted the most conference wins, the highest scoring average and highest shooting percentage since 2000-01. The Cougars posted their highest finish since the 1997-98, tying for seventh after posting season sweeps over California and Oregon State and beating Oregon and Oregon State on the same weekend to record their first weekend sweep in conference play since 2001.
WSU finished the year with a school-record 208 made three-point field goals and the second-most assists in program single-season history. The past two Cougar teams have produced two of the top block totals in program history, recording 98 in 2009-10 and 100 last year, the second-best mark in the Cougar single-season record book.
Daugherty's players have received quite a bit of postseason attention since her arrival on the Palouse. In her first season guard Katie Appleton garnered her first-career all-conference honor after being named All-Pac-10 honorable mention. Guard Kezia Kelly was named Freshman All-Pac-10 honorable mention. April Cook and Jazmine Perkins took home a slew of honors following the 2008-09 season, earning mention on the All-Pac-10 Team and the Pac-10 All-Freshman Team. Perkins was also named to the Pac-10 All-Defensive Team. In 2009-10, Cook garnered her second-straight honorable mention all-conference honor, and freshmen Carly Noyes and KiKi Moore combined for a number of accolades. Daugherty continued to produce all-conference selections last season as Perkins and Sage Romberg garnered All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors while Romberg was placed on the Pac-10 All-Freshmen team and Ireti Amojo received All-Pac-10 All-Freshmen honorable mention. It marked the third consecutive season that Daugherty had at least one freshman garner all-conference recognition.
A pair of Cougs received All-Pac-12 accolades in 2011-12 as Perkins received all-Pac-12 honorable mention while both Perkins and Carly Noyes earned all-defensive team honorable mention.
Dating back to her years at Washington, Daugherty has placed at least one individual on the All-Pac-10/12 team each year since 1997.
Daugherty, whose career record stands at 358-323 (.534), has more than 20 years of experience working with WNBA-caliber talent. She began her head coaching career at Boise State, where she coached for seven years (1989-96) and compiled a record of 123-74 (73-31 Big Sky Conference). Under her watch, the Broncos not only made the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history, but achieved their first national ranking and won their first regular season conference title.
In 1992, the Broncos won the Big Sky regular season championship, and in 1994 they shared the conference crown with Montana and earned an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament. At the conclusion of the 1993-94 season, Daugherty was named Big Sky Co-Coach of the Year.
After turning things around at Boise State, Daugherty continued her success at Washington, where she coached for 11 seasons. After finishing ninth in the Pac-10 in 2000, Daugherty led the Huskies to their first conference title since 1990, the greatest turnaround in conference history. She led Washington to nine postseason appearances in 11 seasons - six NCAA Tournament appearances and three WNIT appearances - and led the Huskies all the way to the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship Elite Eight in 2001.
Daugherty helped a number of players earn individual honors at Washington, with Giuliana Mendiola becoming the school's first Pac-10 Player of the Year, and four players earning District VIII All-America honors.
Home attendance soared under Daugherty's watch at both Boise State and Washington. The Broncos averaged 500 fans per game before Daugherty's arrival. During her tenure, more than 2,000 fans were coming to watch every game, placing Boise State in the nation's top 30 for home attendance in each of her seven seasons. Washington led the Pac-10 in home attendance in both 2002-03 and 2003-04.
The team chemistry formed on the basketball court is a direct result of creating a family atmosphere with Daugherty's staff and players. Daugherty creates a home away from home for her basketball family, consisting of coaches, players and support staff. This environment culminated in 16 players combining for 49 selections to the Pac-10 All-Academic Team at Washington, and 30 student-athletes on the Big Sky Conference All-Academic Team at Boise State. In her five seasons at WSU, nine players have combined for 18 All-Academic selections.
Daugherty's basketball family is involved not only in providing everything necessary to achieve academic excellence, but also the means to becoming involved in community service. Daugherty leads by example, speaking at meetings for the Chamber of Commerce, the Kiwanis and for many women's groups.
A major advocate for healthy heart awareness, Daugherty was named the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association's National Coach of the Year in 2008. Since becoming a survivor of sudden cardiac arrest Daugherty has become one of the nation's most visible spokesmen, filming a nationally-aired commercial, speaking at fund-raisers for the Hope Heart Institute and the American Red Cross and helping WSU sponsor the inaugural "Cougs Have Heart" basketball game to raise awareness for heart disease.
Daugherty is a member of the Women's Basketball Coaches' Association and is a former member of its Board of Directors. She is also a member of both the State Farm Coaches' All-America Team and the Russell Athletic/WBCA Coach of the Year selection committees and is currently serving on the WBCA Ethics Board, the WBCA All-America selection committee for Region 8 and is the captain of the Pac-12 coaches committee. Daugherty often serves as a clinician for the NCAA YES Clinic at the Final Four, and she has been active in USA Basketball and was an assistant coach for the West Team at the 1995 Olympic Sports Festival.
Daugherty also places high priority on keeping the top local high school talent at home in the Northwest. In her first season with the Cougars, Washington's 3A State Player of the Year Katie Grad (Auburn-Riverside) and Shadle Park's all-time leading scorer Lexie Pettersen (Spokane) were each a part of her nationally-ranked recruiting class. Her second recruiting class featured Carly Noyes of Moses Lake, Wash., a three-time conference player of the year at Moses Lake HS. Her 2010 class, two-time Evergreen Conference Most Valuable Player and 2009-10 Seattle Times All-State (all-classifications) honoree Brandi Thomas, of Elma, Wash., went Crimson. This season, Daugherty welcomes Wyoming's two-time Gatorade Player of the Year in Jordan Kelley (Gillette, Wyo.), one of the top-rated low post players out of Canada in 6-3 Shalie Dheensaw (Victoria, B.C.) who has started for the Canadian U17 National Team and speedy three-time all-state selection out of Spokane's Gonzaga Prep Tia Presley (Spokane, Wash.). This past recruiting class features six players from all over the country including Lia Galderia who was named Hawaii Player of the Year three times.
Several of Daugherty's athletes have gone on to coaching careers at both the high school and collegiate level, including Lisa Fisher, an associate head coach with the Cougars in 2006.
Daugherty served as an assistant coach at Stanford under head coach Tara Vanderveer prior to taking over the Boise State program. She helped guide the Cardinal to one of the finest seasons in school history, finishing the 1989 season with a record of 28-3, an undefeated Pac-10 season and a trip to the NCAA Tournament. Daugherty also had a two-year stint on the Kent State staff as an assistant coach from 1983-85.
Daugherty played collegiate basketball at Ohio State from 1974-78, where she led the Buckeyes to the Big Ten Championship in 1977 and 1978. She is still ranked amongst the school's top 25 in career scoring with 1,137 points. She also ranks fifth in career rebounds (829), is tied for 17th in career field goals made (500) and shares the single-game school record for blocked shots (12 against Michigan State in 1976). At the conclusion of her senior season, she earned first-team All-America honors and was a Wade Trophy finalist the first year the award was presented. Just prior to the start of the 2001 season, The Ohio State University honored Daugherty with an induction into the OSU Athletic Hall of Fame. Daugherty will be inducted into the Westerville High School in December, 2011.
Following graduation in 1978, Daugherty contributed as both a player and coach on several international teams, including a period as a player and coach for the Union Sportive Vierzon Club based in France.
Daugherty, a native of Columbus, Ohio, is the daughter of Naomi and Jim Brewer and has two brothers, Mark and Neil Brewer, and one sister, Ruth Williams. She and her husband Mike are the parents of twins Doc and Breanne.