Three Atlantic 10 Conference championships — two in the regular season and one in the tournament — plus two NCAA tournament berths in two years earned Dayton Flyers coach Shauna Green a contract extension last week.
Green’s new deal lasts through 2024. If she remains with the Flyers that long, she’ll have coached eight seasons, tying her for the second-longest tenure in school history behind only Jim Jabir (13 seasons).
“The biggest thing is just knowing you have the administration’s complete support,” Green said. “They’ve been unbelievable. We’ve been talking about (an extension) before the season even ended. It’s always great to feel they want you here, and I want to be here. Hopefully, we can just continue to build on what we’ve done and keep on winning.”
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In addition to talking about her contract, Green touched on another topics relating to her second offseason as Dayton head coach in a phone interview Monday while she was in Naples, Fla., for the annual A-10 meetings:
1. New recruit: Dayton announced the addition of Vanderbilt transfer Erin Whalen, a 6-foot-1 guard/forward, on April 24. She will sit out the 2018-19 season and then has two seasons of eligibility remaining. She averaged 7.4 points and 1.8 rebounds last season.
“We hit a home run with (Whalen),” Green said. “She’s going to be somebody who totally fits our culture and can come in and play multiple positions and score. She can really shoot it.”
2. Recruiting connections: Green was Dayton’s lead recruiter on Whalen in 2015 when Whalen was in high school and Green was an assistant on Jabir’s staff.
“I had a really good relationship with her, and we were down at the A-10 tournament when she got her release (from Vanderbilt),” Green said. “She called and reached out. It’s not like you have to try to build a relationship in a month because we already had that preexisting relationship, which I think is key when you talk about the transfer world.”
Green said it was a similar situation with guard Araion Bradshaw, who transferred from South Carolina to Dayton last year. Green recruited Bradshaw when she was in high school, and so did Dayton assistant coach Calamity McEntire, who was at Arizona at the time.
“When she decided to transfer, she called us,” Green said. “She didn’t even look at another school. She didn’t even go through the process. She just knew she wanted to come here.”
3. Full team: With Whalen joining the program, all 13 scholarships have been filled for the coming season. Dayton has one 2019 commitment from Wayne High School guard Destiny Bohannon.
Dayton can fill at least two more scholarships for 2019. After next season, it loses seniors Lauren Cannatelli, Maddy Dennis and Tiaera Phillips.
Hired in September 2016, Green got a late start in recruiting. The 2019 class will be her staff’s first true class in that it’s a group they have been recruiting for most of the high school careers of the players.
“I think we’ve made great, great headway,” Green said. “It takes so much time. You’ve got to get really entrenched in those younger classes, and that takes years of building relationships. Coming in late, I thought we did as great as we possibly could just to get some people for the class last year and really got in on the ’19s and got an early commitment in the ‘19 class. That is really big. We’re in a really good spot with a couple ’19s we feel really good about. We made up a lot of ground fast. Now the work’s coming in on the ‘20 and ‘21 classes, which seems far away but it’s not.”
4. Summer trip: Dayton will play three games against professional players in Italy in August during its first overseas trip since 2013.
The team will visit Rome, Florence, Venice and Lake Como in a trip that lasts from Aug. 5-15. The Flyers took a similar trip in August 2013 with stops in Rome, Venice, Pisa, Lake Como and Verona.
“It’s a country you really can’t go wrong with,” Green said.
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All the newcomers will join the returning players on campus when the second summer session begins at UD on June 25.
“Because we’re going to Italy, and it’s almost like a never-ending season, we’re going to be really smart,” Green said. “I don’t want to burn them out. I want them to be ready to go in the fall and not be dreading it because we’ve been working out for months. We’ll do a lot of individual work this summer, and as late July comes and we get our 10 practices, we’ll start getting into team stuff. This trip will be important for us because we have so many new pieces. We’re just going to be so different. We have a good core group returning, but you have a new point guard and a lot of new pieces coming in. The timing worked out perfectly for this trip.
5. Injury updates: Green provided updates on the three players Dayton lost to injuries last season.
• Guard Jenna Giacone missed all of her sophomore year after suffering a foot injury last summer.
“Jenna’s feeling pretty good,” Green said. “She’s making strides. We’ll know with her how she responds hopefully by August when we go to Italy. She’s doing better, but it’s day by day with her.”
• Guard/forward Ashleigh Parkinson tore her ACL in the third game last season and missed the rest of her junior season.
“Ashleigh’s recovering really well,” Green said. “She’s right on track.”
• Guard Shakeela Fowler, a transfer from Trinity Valley Community College, missed all of her junior season after suffering an ACL tear in September.
“She’s cleared to do everything,” Green said. “We’re just easing her back into being full-go.”