Statement from UConn coach Geno Auriemma regarding Debbie Ryan
Before UConn head coach Geno Auriemma arrived in Connecticut he served as an assistant to longtime Virginia coach Debbie Ryan for four years. Saturday, UVa announced that Ryan was stepping down from the helm of the team after 34 years. Auriemma released a statement about Ryanâ€™s decision to resign.
"I was as shocked as anyone when I heard the news. Debbie has been one of the most influential people in my life. Without the opportunity that she gave me and the support I received at the University of Virginia, my life would be totally different than it is today. She will be missed by all her players, present and former, but most importantly, the game will miss her."
Ryan amassed 736 victories in her time as head coach. Only eight other active Division I women’s basketball coaches have reached the 700-win mark.
Her resignation is effective at the end of the season. The Cavaliers played in the NCAA Tournament 24 times under her and made three consecutive Final Four appearances from 1990-92.
This season the team is 16-15 and not expected to make the NCAA tournament field. However, Virginia is hosting first- and second-round games.