basketball-women-d1 flag

The Associated Press | April 9, 2014

Graves leaves Gonzaga to coach at Oregon

Kelly Graves
EUGENE, Ore. -- Oregon has hired Kelly Graves of Gonzaga as the new Ducks women's head basketball coach.

Graves has led Gonzaga to the NCAA tournament for the past six seasons, and the Bulldogs advanced to the Elite Eight in 2011. The team was a No. 6 seed this past season, the highest seeding in school history, before losing to James Madison in the opening game and finishing at 29-5.

Graves has gone 317-176 overall in 14 seasons at Gonzaga, leading the team to an unprecedented 10 consecutive West Coast Conference championships.

''I needed a new challenge,'' Graves said at a news conference Tuesday. ''This is something, professionally, that I was looking for. There's only one position in this conference I would have left for, and it was Oregon.''

A 51-year-old Utah native, Graves replaces Paul Westhead, whose contract was not renewed. Westhead's record was 65-90 and 27-64 in the Pac-12 during five seasons with the Ducks.

Oregon has had just one winning season in the past seven years and was 16-16 this past season. The Ducks haven't been to the NCAA tournament since 2005.

''Kelly Graves is one of the best coaches in women's basketball and we are thrilled to have him lead our program,'' Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens said. ''Beyond what his teams have accomplished on the court, Kelly is a dynamic personality who will engage and energize our fan base.''

Graves, who was head coach at St. Mary's before joining Gonzaga, signed a six-year deal with the Ducks.

He has previous ties to the state: He was once an assistant for the Portland Pilots. His wife is from Portland and two of his three children were born in Oregon.

''We appreciate the tremendous success that was achieved during Kelly Graves' tenure at Gonzaga and wish him well at Oregon,'' Bulldogs athletic director Mike Roth said in a statement. ''We will work hard to identify the very best candidate to build on what we have today.''

College basketball teams with the most WNBA 1st-round draft picks

Connecticut leads all women's college basketball programs with 25 players taken in the first round of the WNBA draft.
READ MORE

1 fun-to-watch player from every Sweet 16 team, ranked

Before the 2021 NCAA tournament continues, NCAA.com correspondent Andy Katz ranked his favorite players on each team from this year's Sweet 16 field during the March 23 episode of the March Madness 365 podcast.
READ MORE

The NCAA tournament bracket picks to make if you feel like throwing caution to the wind

Here's how to fill out your NCAA bracket if you're feeling bold and want to get an edge based on the trends we're seeing in picks so far.
READ MORE

Subscribe To Email Updates

Enter your information to receive emails about offers, promotions from NCAA.com and our partners