May 26, 2021
National Coach of the Year Brenda Frese extended at Maryland
Legendary Terp coach to stay in College Park through 2026-27
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Brenda Frese is the most successful men’s or women’s basketball coach in the history of the University of Maryland. With 17 NCAA Tournament appearances, nine Sweet Sixteens, six Elite Eights, three Final Fours and the 2006 national championship, she has captained one of the most successful women’s basketball programs in the country in recent memory.
It’s no surprise that Frese has followed up her AP National Coach of the Year campaign with an extension through the 2026-27 season, which was announced by Maryland on Tuesday.
“Coach Frese has shown consistent excellence on and off the court throughout her 19 years here at Maryland,” said Maryland athletic director Damon Evans. “Coach Frese’s teams have shown unprecedented success in the Big Ten and have sustained success among the nation’s best. Her program is a model for many because the student-athletes she brings to Maryland are simply the best of the best. We wanted to make sure she is leading our Terrapins for many years to come.”
“First of all, I am grateful that Maryland believes in our program,” Frese said. “Maryland is really a place where student-athletes can have it all. We take great pride in the name on the front of our uniforms and representing an elite university.
“I want to thank president Darryll Pines, athletic director Damon Evans and deputy AD Colleen Sorem for their commitment and support of our team. I am honored and humbled to have led this program for the past 19 years and am so proud of the national power we have rebuilt and sustained. I am looking forward to what lies ahead in the future and making some more Maryland magic.”
With five new starters, Maryland went 26-3 (17-1 Big Ten) in 2020-21, earned a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament and cruised into the Sweet Sixteen with blowout wins in the first two rounds. Because of their dominant offense (90.8 points per game), they were being talked about as a national championship contender before falling to Texas in the Sweet Sixteen.
Frese was at the center of the special season, inspiring the Terps with her spirit and charisma. There’s a reason she is one of just four coaches to be named National Coach of the Year multiple times. The others are Geno Auriemma of UConn, Kim Mulkey of LSU and former Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw.
The Terps return all of their stars from 2020-21, most notably rising juniors and leading scorers Ashley Owusu and Diamond Miller. Maryland’s third-and fourth-leading scorers, Chloe Bibby and Katie Benzan, respectively, have both decided to return for an extra year. Angel Reese, the No. 2 HoopGurlz recruit from the Class of 2020, will be entering her sophomore season and will be expected to do big things.