Utah State ends the first season of the Jerry Finkbeiner era with an 18-14 record.
The Aggies face the Coyotes for the second time this season.
USU has advanced to the semifinals three-straight seasons.
The Aggies will take on the winner of the game between Denver and Texas State.
The Aggies are tied for first with Seattle heading into the regular-season finale.
USU WBB head coach Jerry Finkbeiner previews Thursday's first-round WBI game vs South Dakota
USU Introduces New Women's Basketball Head Coach Jerry Finkbeiner
USU Women's Basketball vs Utah 2013
USU Women's Basketball vs LMU 2013
Women's Basketball vs. Northwest Nazarene 2013
Utah State Women's Basketball WBI vs. South Dakota
Utah State Women's Basketball vs. UT Arlington
April 26, 2012
Jerry Finkbeiner enters his second season as Utah State women's basketball head coach after being named the ninth head coach in 23 years of Aggie women's basketball on April 26, 2012.
"We are extremely excited to have Jerry Finkbeiner join Utah State University and be our next head women's basketball coach," said USU Vice President and Athletics Director Scott Barnes at the time of his hiring. "He is a skilled leader, and his coaching philosophy aligns very well with our core values and mission. The success of Jerry's teams both on and off the court during his illustrious career demonstrates his attention to detail, and we are convinced that he will continue to build upon the high level of achievement we have seen with our women's program over the past few years. Plus, his up-tempo style of play will be fun for our student-athletes and fans."
Finkbeiner (pronounced Fink-by-ner) is the second male coach in Utah State history along with Bob Corbin who was the Aggies' coach from 1984-86. Finkbeiner is only the second USU coach since the re-instatement of the program in 2003 when Raegan Pebley took over. Pebley left USU to take the head coaching position at Fresno State following the 2011-12 season.
Finkbeiner took over a Utah State program that had its first 20-win season in 2011-12, finishing with a 21-10 record as it advanced to Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) for the second-straight season.
Finkbeiner came to Utah State from Oral Roberts in Tulsa, Okla., where he spent 16 years as head coach. During his tenure at ORU, the Golden Eagles averaged 17 wins per season and advanced to postseason play eight times in the past 13 years with five trips to the NCAA Tournament and three appearances in the WNIT. Prior to Finkbeiner's arrival, ORU had never played in an NCAA Tournament game.
Overall, Finkbeiner has a 492-257 (.657) record in 24 years as a collegiate head coach at Oral Roberts (1996-2013), Southern Nazarene (1991-96) and USU. He also ranks 30th in the nation among active coaches with his 492 career wins, while his 65.7 percent winning percentage ranks tied for 48th nationally among active coaches.
"I was very impressed with the team spirit amongst the administration and the athletic department. Everyone seems to be on the same page. There is a lot of spirit for the university and support for each other. I am very impressed with that. The other thing that stands out to me is some of the traditions of Utah State such as the White and Blue A; things that go with and establish the university that are closely tied with athletics. So, I am really looking forward to going to the next step and living the life of an Aggie," Finkbeiner said when he was hired.
During the 2012-13 season, which was his first season at Utah State, the Aggies achieved an 18-14 record. USU finished second in the WAC standings for the second-straight season with a 14-4 mark. Under the direction of Finkbeiner, Utah State advanced to postseason for the third-straight season, as the Aggies played in the Women's Basketball Invitational. USU finished the season second in the nation in free throw percentage with a school and WAC record 80.1 percent from the charity stripe. Three players were honored by the WAC as Devyn Christensen earned first-team all-WAC honors, while Jennifer Schlott and Jenna Johnson earned second and third-team all-WAC honors, respectively. Christensen also ended the season third in the nation in free throw shooting at 92.4 percent.
The Aggies also found success in the classroom under Finkbeiner as five players earned academic all-WAC honors.
As the head coach at Oral Roberts, Finkbeiner led the Golden Eagles to seven Summit League (formerly Mid-Continent Conference) regular season and tournament titles and six 20-win seasons, including three consecutive 20-win campaigns, a first for the program in over three decades. At ORU, Finkbeiner coached five All-Americans, eight conference players of the year, five conference newcomers of the year and 26 all-conference selections. Furthermore, Finkbeiner was named conference coach of the year twice during his ORU tenure.
Oral Roberts hit the 20-win plateau for the third-straight season in 2011-12 and achieved several landmark victories along the way. The Golden Eagles defeated Wisconsin in early November for their first win over a Big Ten program since 1977, and their win over the WAC's Louisiana Tech was their first against the three-time national champions. ORU also advanced to the WNIT in 2011-12, their third consecutive postseason appearance.
In his six years prior to ORU, Finkbeiner led Southern Nazarene to three-straight NAIA national titles and a combined 99-4 record from 1994 to 1996. Finkbeiner posted a 186-20 record in six seasons at SNU. During his career at Southern Nazarene, Finkbeiner coached nine NAIA All-Americans and a two-time NAIA Player of the Year, while five of his players went on to play professional basketball overseas.
During his tenure at Southern Nazarene, Finkbeiner's coaching achievements did not go unnoticed as he was named the NAIA National Coach of the Year in 1994, 1995 and 1996. In 1995, he was also named as the College Sports Magazine and Converse National Coach of the Year. Finkbeiner was named the NAIA District 9 Coach of the Year in 1993 and the Sooner Athletic Conference Coach of the Year from 1992 to 1996.
Finkbeiner, a native of Southern California, attended Southern Nazarene in Oklahoma City from 1975-80, where he was a four-year letterwinner. In that time, he was selected as a Christian Collegiate All-American in 1978. Finkbeiner graduated with a bachelor's of science degree in physical education and completed his master's degree in physical education at Northwest Missouri State University. Along with coaching at SNU, Finkbeiner also worked as a professor in the kinesiology and sports management department.
Finkbeiner and his wife, Reva, have five children and two daughter-in-laws, Isaac (Angela), Ben (Alycia), Corban, Micha and Bethany. His son, Ben, is an assistant coach for the Boise State women's basketball team.
Fans can follow USU women's basketball and Utah State athletics at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics.
Finkbeiner's Coaching History 2012 - Utah State Women's Basketball Head Coach 1996-2012 - Oral Roberts Women's Head Coach 1991-96 - Southern Nazerene Women's Head Coach 1986-88 - Nampa (Idaho) High School Girls' Head Coach 1985-86 - Northwest Nazarene Women's Head Coach 1984-85 - Northwest Nazarene Men's Assistant Coach 1983-84 - Northwest Missouri State University Men's Graduate Assistant 1980-83 - Melba (Idaho) HIgh School Boy's Head Coach