ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – After 16 seasons of unprecedented success, St. Bonaventure University women's basketball head coach Jim Crowley has announced that he is stepping down from the position to accept the same position at Providence College.
As St. Bonaventure's coach, Crowley led the program to a 258-231 overall record. Since the 2008-09 season, the Bonnies have posted 21 or more victories six times including two NCAA Tournament appearances and four WNIT berths. Crowley's teams have had only one losing season since 2006-07 including a 171-90 record since the 2008-09 campaign.
The fifth coach in 43 seasons of women's basketball at St. Bonaventure, Crowley is far and away the winningest coach in program history, owning 123 more victories than any other Bona coach.
"First and foremost, we cannot thank Jim enough for what he's done for St. Bonaventure University and the women's basketball program," said Athletics Director Tim Kenney. "His dedication and work ethic inspired the program to an amazing run of success both on the court and in the classroom. He persevered through some tough times, never wavered in his beliefs, and led the program to new heights. He is the embodiment of what it means to be a Bonnie. While we hate to see them move on, we congratulate Jim and (his wife) Monti and wish them nothing but the best."
"It's a bittersweet time because I've always dreamed of coaching in the Big East but so much of my heart is with Bonaventure and the Olean community," Crowley said. "I can never thank the University, the fans, the alums, the community enough, but mostly I can't thank all of our players enough because they are the ones who made all of our success possible. (Providence) was just an opportunity I couldn't pass up."
This past season, Crowley directed Bona to a 24-8 record and a spot in the NCAA Round of 32 following a first round victory over Oklahoma State. St. Bonaventure finished 16-0 at the Reilly Center and went 12-4 in the Atlantic 10. Senior Katie Healy was named to the first team All-Conference and completed her career fourth all-time in school history in scoring, third in rebounding and first in blocked shots.
In 2011-12, Crowley led the Bonnies to a school-best 31-4 mark and a perfect 14-0 record in Atlantic 10 play, a year that culminated in a trip to the NCAA Sweet 16.
He was recognized as the 2012 ESPN.com National Coach of the Year and was also named the Basketball Coaches Association of New York Division I Coach of the Year that spring. He is also a three-time Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year, earning that recognition from his peers in 2009, 2012 and 2014. He oversaw the program's first-ever national ranking during the 2012 season, and the Bonnies again received votes in the Associated Press Top 25 this past year.
Crowley stands sixth all-time in Atlantic 10 coaching victories with 108. He has coached 12 St. Bonaventure players to All-Atlantic 10 honors and since 2006, three players that were coached by Crowley have gone on to sign professional contracts.
The Bonnies have been equally as successful in the classroom during Crowley's tenure. Four times in the past eight years, St. Bonaventure has been on the Women's Basketball Coaches Association Top 25 Academic Honor Roll.
A national search for a new head coach will begin immediately, Kenney said.
"This program has never been in better shape," Kenney said, "and we are well-positioned to attract strong candidates for the head coaching job. Our student-athletes, fans, supporters and the alumni of the program deserve nothing less."