After four years at the helm of Virginia women’s basketball, Virginia Athletics announced today that Coach Tina Thompson will not be returning. Athletic Director Carla Williams revealed that the remainder of Thompson’s contract — one with a year still remaining — will be terminated.
“Unfortunately, we have not experienced the kind of success this program has come to expect and deserve,” Williams said. “I am thankful for Coach Thompson’s effort and I wish her the very best.”
Williams also announced a national search for the next head coach will begin immediately.
Hired during the spring of 2018, Thompson took over for former head coach Joanne Boyle — who amassed a 129-99 record in seven seasons with the Cavaliers. While Boyle was not nearly as successful as Virginia coaching legend Debbie Ryan, Boyle suffered only one losing season to go along with a pair of 20-win seasons.
However, Thompson was never able to find her footing with the Cavaliers, as she was unable to secure a single winning season in her four years. In her final season at Virginia, the team lost 16 consecutive games. Not only did the Cavaliers’ win over Duke on Feb. 17 mark the end of that streak, it also marked the first ACC win for the program in nearly two calendar years.
After a season-ending loss to Wake Forest in the ACC Tournament Wednesday, Thompson’s final record at Virginia stands at 30-63 — a far cry from her predecessors.
Certainly, Virginia faithful hope for better out of a program that once found immense success under the direction of Ryan. While the Cavaliers missed a chance by not hiring former Virginia women’s basketball standout Dawn Staley — who now is the head coach at a national powerhouse in South Carolina — at the end of Ryan’s tenure, Williams hopes to secure a coach that can turn the program around.