The University of Washington today announced that women’s head basketball coach Jody Wynn has been relieved of her duties. She finishes her tenure on Montlake with a 38-75 (0.336) record and 11-58 (0.159) record in conference play. Wynn signed a 6-year, $2.6 million contract back in 2017 of which 2 years were remaining.
Wynn came to Washington after 8 seasons as the head coach at Long Beach State where she had just taken her team to the NCAA tournament for the first time. It was a tough ask for Wynn to come into the program immediately after Washington had made a Final Four and Sweet Sixteen led by eventual #1 overall WNBA draft pick Kelsey Plum. Plum and the rest of the veteran core of that team left, sticking Wynn with a complete rebuild to manage.
Wynn improved from 7-23 to 11-21 to 13-17 in her first 3 seasons but backslid in this shortened pandemic season to 7-14. Washington managed an upset of Colorado in the first round of the Pac-12 tournament as a #11 seed but was rarely competitive against the best teams in the conference. It also didn’t help this year that key returner Missy Peterson tore her ACL shortly before the season started.
The Huskies had the makings of a solid young core this year with the trio of Haley Van Dyke (12.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg), Quay Miller (9.9 ppg, 6.0 rpg), and Tameiya Sadler (10.4 ppg, 45% 3pt). Those 3 led the team as the 3 highest scorers and none were seniors.
Wynn had also assembled her best recruiting class heading into next year. Washington signed 4 of ESPN’s top-100 recruits for the class of 2021 (#63, #76, #85, and #94) to bolster the existing young core. Fans of the men’s team will surely see some parallels between Wynn’s dismissal and Lorenzo Romar’s given the recruiting classes put at risk by the firing. Whoever takes over for Wynn will have to try to hold on to the class as well as the current star trio to have a chance to succeed in the coming years.