During the middle of yet another impressive win for the UConn women’s basketball team, one of the pillars of the program received a well-deserved honor as associate head coach Chris Dailey was named to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame 2018 class.
Dailey joins former Tennessee assistant Mike DeMoss and former Lady Vols legend Chamique Holdsclaw, Southern Cal and Houston Comets standout Tina Thompson and current New York Liberty head coach Katie Smith. Former Colorado coach Ceal Barry and high school/JuCo coach Rose Marie Battaglia round to the 2018 class.
“It’s a reflection on being able to acknowledge the contributions of everyone,” Dailey said of being selected as an assistant coach. “It’s an honor to be one of the first and to go in with Mickey DeMoss I think that’s fitting. We’ve battled each for a long time and are good friends, it seems like it’s a fitting move.”
For 33 years, Dailey has coached alongside Geno Auriemma, who was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006, helping to develop the Huskies into the most dominant program in the history of Division I athletics. Under Dailey and Auriemma, UConn has won 11 national championships, made 18 Final Fours (including 10 in a row) and put together the two longest winning streaks in Division I basketball.
Despite numerous offers to become a head coach elsewhere, Dailey has remained at UConn and alongside Auriemma. After a successful playing career at Rutgers, Dailey passed on her original plan of becoming a high school teacher to spend one season as an assistant coach at Cornell in 1982 before returning to Rutgers under head coach Theresa Grentz from 1983-1985.
Following the 1984-85 season, Dailey left her alma mater to team up with Auriemma in Storrs, taking a team that was 70 wins below .500 through the program’s first 11 seasons and playing in the Field House to winning nearly 800 more games (854) than they’ve lost (57) in the last 25 seasons.
Throughout her coaching career, Dailey has received numerous other accolades, including being inducted into the Connecticut Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013, the New Jersey Sports Writers Association Hall of Fame in 2012 and the Huskies of Honor during the 2016-17 season. Dailey and the rest of the 2018 Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame Class will be officially inducted on June 9, 2018 in Knoxville, Tennessee.