Amanda Butler a Finalist for National Coach of the Year Award

University of Florida head coach Amanda Butler was honored as a finalist for the 2016 United States Marine Corps/WBCA NCAA Division I National Coach of the Year, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) announced today.

Butler, who also was honored as a semifinalist for the 2016 Naismith Trophy Women’s College Coach of the Year, guided the 2015-16 Gators to a 22-9 overall record and tied for fourth in the final Southeastern Conference standings after being selected during the preseason to finish 12th in the 14-team league.

Some of the handful of highlights from UF’s 2015-16 season include:

  • Earned the 15th NCAA Tournament berth in program history
  • UF was awarded a No. 5 seed in the NCAAs, its highest since 2004 (No. 5)
  • UF led the SEC in scoring offense for the first time in program history and ranked No. 16 nationally (as of March 22), one year after being ranked No. 222 in the country and No. 9 in the SEC.
  • Gators ranked No. 10 nationally in offensive rebounds per game, one year removed from not appearing in the top-30 in the country.
  • Team won 9 more games than it had the previous season, the second-best one-year turnaround in program history
  • Posted 15th 20-win season in program history; sixth under Butler
  • Compiled 20 wins prior to the SEC Tournament for the first time since the 2008-09 season
  • Team compiled 22 wins, the most since the 2012-13 season (22 wins)
  • Florida achieved its highest national ranking in the polls (No. 16, Feb. 9 AP poll) since Feb. 16, 2009.
  • The 2015-16 Gators joined the 1996-97 and 2000-01 teams as the only clubs in program history to defeat four top-15 opponents in a season.
  • Compiled the second-longest winning streak in program history (12 games)

This is just the second time in program history a Gator coach has been a finalist for a national award. Carol Ross was a finalist for the Naismith National Coach of the Year honor in 2002, while being recognized as the WBCA District Coach of the Year three times.

“The Marine Corps continues to enjoy our long and successful partnership with the WBCA.  For us, one of the major highlights of the relationship is to annually recognize the organization’s outstanding coaches,” said Lieutenant Colonel Brian Proctor, Assistant Chief of Staff Diversity, Marine Corps Recruiting Command.  “Each of these fine individuals, chosen by their peers to receive this well-deserved honor, exemplifies the Marine Corps leadership values of honor, courage and commitment.”
The United States Marine Corps and the WBCA present the Pat Summitt Trophy, named for the legendary University of Tennessee coach, to the United States Marine Corps/WBCA National Coach of the Year annually in each of the six WBCA membership divisions (NCAA Divisions I, II and III; NAIA; junior/community college and high school).

UConn’s Geno Auriemma was recognized as the recipient of the Pat Summitt Trophy presented to the 2016 United States Marine Corps/WBCA NCAA Division I National Coach of the Year. This marks the 34th year since 1983 that the WBCA has presented this honor to a NCAA Division I head coach.

The national coach of the year is selected from a list of finalists composed of the regional coaches of the year, who are chosen by vote of their peers in their respective WBCA membership regions.  They are:

Region 1 – David Magarity, United States Military Academy

  • Region 1 – Muffet McGraw, University of Notre Dame
  • Region 2 – Amanda Butler, University of Florida
  • Region 2 – Dawn Staley, University of South Carolina
  • Region 3 – Geno Auriemma, University of Connecticut
  • Region 3 – Kim Mulkey, Baylor University
  • Region 4 – Doug Bruno, DePaul University
  • Region 4 – Brenda Frese, University of Maryland
  • Region 5 – Cori Close, UCLA
  • Region 5 – Charli Turner Thorne, Arizona State University

About the WBCA: Founded in 1981, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association promotes women’s basketball by unifying coaches at all levels to develop a reputable identity for the sport and to foster and promote the development of the game in all of its aspects as a sport for women and girls. For more information about the WBCA, please visit

Coach Amanda Butler on Twitter