So what or who’s next for the Stony Brook women’s team. Michele Cherry stepped down as coach effective immediately on Sunday.
The Seawolves had been mired in mediocrity during Cherry’s three-plus years at the helm. Evelyn Thompson will take over for the remainder of the season and she’ll be on the bench on Tuesday when the Seawolves (3-13, 0-4 America East) take on Albany.
Barring a miraculous run over the next 12 conference games its unlikely Thompson will get the job. Stony Brook athletic director Jim Fiore said in a statement the school will conduct a national search.
Stony Brook doesn’t have much tradition on the Division I level, outside of a WNIT appearance under former coach Maura McHugh, but it’s a school you can win at. McHugh proved that with a two-year stretch that produced a 38-20 mark.
Stony Brook has upgraded its facility over the last several years and is still hoping to get the Indoor Sports Complex renovated. The recent success of the men’s basketball team could also be a factor in recruiting.
There’s no word on a short list of candidates, but College Hoops Scoops has come up with a few coaches who could be ready for the job.
St. John’s top assistant Joe Tartamella should be on any list in this region. He’s a local guy (Smithtown) with eight years in as an assistant on Kim Barnes Arico’s staff and is regarded as a great recruiter. He knows the region is well as any coach and has been involved in the recruitment of several of St. John’s top players.
University of Pittsburgh assistant coach Pat Coyle might be worth taking a look at. Remember her? Coyle led the New York Liberty to the WNBA Eastern Conference Final a few years ago. She played at Rutgers and has an intimate knowledge of the region. One person who knows her well has said she likes being back in the college game. Who knows? Stony Brook could be just what she needs to get back into the game as a head coach.
Syracuse assistant coach Matt Luneau and Christ the King girls high school coach Bob Mackey could also be viable candidates. Luneau has been an integral part of the Orange’s resurgence and his experience in the Big East makes him a hot commodity, while Mackey was on the radar for the St. John’s women’s job a while back. It’s rare for a high school coach to get a head job at a Division I school, but Stony Brook could do worse.