KNOXVILLE, Tenn. --- With the likes of Pat Summitt, Geno Auriemma, Van Chancellor, C. Vivian Stringer, Holly Warlick, Debbie Antonelli, Mel Greenburg and the Wayland Baptist Flying Queens among the crowd of over 600 in the Bijou Theater in Knoxville, Tenn., newly minted head coach of the Chattanooga Lady Mocs, Jim Foster was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame Saturday night.
Foster was escorted into the ceremony by his former and the current Director of Athletics at St. Joseph’s University Don Dijulia and his son Chris and had his wife Donna as well as his sons Christian and Andrew, Christian’s wife April and their sons George and Oliver among the many well wishers in the audience.
Foster’s 35-year career has spanned three Division I universities beginning with St. Joseph’s where he compiled an overall record of 248-126 (.663) in 13 seasons. At St. Joe’s, he led the Hawks to six NCAA Tournaments and was named the WBCA Coach of the Year in 1985.
In 1991 he was named the head coach at Vanderbilt where he guided the 1993 Commodores to the NCAA Final Four. In 11 seasons, he led Vandy to a 256-99 (.721) overall record and 10 NCAA Tournament appearances. He led the Commodores to the SEC Tournament title game five times and came away with three championships.
In 2002, Foster became the head coach of Ohio State and was named the Big Ten Coach of the Year four times and led the Buckeyes to six Big Ten titles. He took Ohio State to the NCAA Tournament in 10 of his 11 seasons and posted an overall record of 279-82 (.772) becoming just the second coach, men’s or women’s, at any level to win at least 200 games at three different schools.
Coach Foster is ranked 11th all-time in career victories with an overall record of 783-307. He was the head coach for the gold-medal winning teams at the 2002 World Championships for Young Women and the 1997 World University Games.
He was an assistant coach for the 1992 U.S. Olympic Team (Bronze), the 1990 World Championship Team (Gold), the 1990 Goodwill Games team (Gold) and the 1987 U.S. Olympic Festival Team (Gold). He is currently the chair of the selection committee for the U19 National Team. This is his fourth time serving on the selection committee for USA Basketball.
For his complete bio, please click on the link above.
Also inducted into the 2013 Hall of Fame class was Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair, Peggie Gillom-Granderson, a four year starter at the University of Mississippi, Jennifer Rizzotti who played four seasons at the University of Connecticut, Annette Smith-Knight who finished her career at Texas A&M with 2,523 career points, and Sue Wicks who recorded 2,655 points and 1,357 rebounds at Rutgers.
Antonelli served as the Mistress of Ceremonies for the event. Eastman Chemicals was the presenting sponsor for the entire weekend. The Wayland Baptist Flying Queens (1953-58) were added to the “Trailblazers of the Game” exhibit. The Flyinig Queens went undefeated from November 1953 until March of 1958 posting the longest winning streak in women’s basketball history at 131 games. In that time they captured four AAU National Championships and produced 15 AAU All-Americans.
The event was held at the historic Bijou Theater that opened in 1909 as part of the Lamar Hotel. In 2005, under new ownership, the Bijou Theater received a $2.1 million renovation and reopened on June 2, 2006 with a capacity of nearly 700.
The Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame opened in 1999 and inducted 25 into the inaugural class. That group included Summitt as coach, and players Nancy Lieberman and Cheryl Miller.
The Women's Basketball Hall of Fame opened in June 1999 in Knoxville, Tennessee. It is the only facility of its kind dedicated to all levels of women's basketball. With the 2013 Induction, the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame will celebrate its 15th Anniversary and add six new members to our prestigious Hall, honoring 133 inductees.
In addition to preserving the history of the game, the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame is also the perfect location for special events, proms, wedding receptions, corporate meetings, birthday parties, and reunions, to name a few. So whether you are looking for inspiration, education or just plain fun, the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame is the place to find it!