Wildcat Women Hire New Assistant Coach

Feb. 11, 2002

Tucson, Ariz. (Feb. 11) - The University of Arizona women's basketball program has hired Kellee Barney as assistant coach, announced head coach Joan Bonvicini on Monday.

Barney, who has spent the last two years in the business world, brings to Arizona 16 years of coaching experience at the Division I level. She was head coach at Gonzaga University from 1994-2000, tallying a combined 45-117 record with the Zags.

Prior to her stint at Gonzaga, Barney was on staff at Washington State for nine seasons, under former Cougar head coach Harold Rhodes. She started as an assistant coach from 1985-93, then was promoted to associate head coach for the 1993-94 season. WSU gathered a 107-143 record during her time there, including the program's last visit to the NCAA tournament in 1991. Barney was an assistant coach for the Pac-10 All-Star Team during its 1992 tour of Belgium and France and also during its 1989 tour of Hungary.

Barney began her career as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Portland State from 1983-85 before moving on to Washington State.

'I am extremely excited about the opportunity to work with Arizona women's basketball,' said Barney. 'It has been a dream of mine to work at Arizona. The program just has the total package. I know I will have to work hard right away, but it's fantastic to be back in basketball and to get to work with Coach Bonvicini.'

A graduate of the University of Idaho, Barney earned a bachelor of science degree in sociology from the school in 1983. She played for the Vandals from 1982-83 and was part of Idaho's 1982 Northwest Empire League and regional champion team that posted a 27-5 mark.

Barney received an associate of arts degree from Wenatchee Valley College in 1981 and spent two seasons playing basketball for the school, which is located in Wenatchee, Wash. Both the 1980 and 1981 teams won state championships during her career there.

'We're very happy to have Kellee as a part of our staff,' said Bonvicini. 'She has great experience in the Pac-10 and on the West Coast, and her experience as a head coach will help us tremendously. Kellee will begin recruiting for us immediately, so she will have to hit the ground running.'

Barney's responsibilities with the Wildcats will include recruiting, scouting and floor work with the players. She is filling the vacancy left by former UA assistant Karen Caires, who resigned in mid-December.

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