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Women's hoops HOF coach Gail Goestenkors joins CMU staff


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Courtesy photo (Duke Magazine)

Central Michigan women's basketball coach Heather Oesterle has added another high profile assistant coach. 

On Aug. 15, ESPN's Mechelle Voepel reported that Oesterle hired Gail Goestenkors as the Chippewas' newest associate head coach. Goestenkors brings 30 years of coaching experience to the Chippewas, including 20 as head coach of a pair of Power Five programs. 


Goestenkors received her first head coaching opportunity with Duke in 1992. She spent 15 years at the helm of the Blue Devils and was named ACC Coach of the Year seven times. In 2003, she was named Naismith Coach of the Year and the Women's Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year. 

Following the 2007 season, Goestenkors left Duke for Texas after compiling a 369-99 record. She spent five years with the Longhorns and earned an NCAA Tournament berth in each season. After going 18-14 in the 2011-12 season, Goestenkors stepped down from her position. 

Goestenkors' teams have made the NCAA Tournament in all but two years, her first two at Duke, with four Final Four appearances and two showings in the National Championship Game with the Blue Devils.

She spent one season apiece with the WNBA's Los Angeles Sparks and Indiana Fever, however left following the 2015 and has since co-founded Coaching Full Circle, a firm that consults, advises and mentors basketball coaches. She was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015. 

Goestenkors was also the 2006 recipient of the Carol Eckman Award.


Goestenkors is a Waterford native and played her college basketball at Saginaw Valley State. Voepel reported that proximity to home played a factor to Goestenkors taking the job after a five-year hiatus. 

"My basketball journey has been a wonderful adventure but I have missed college coaching," Goestenkors told Voepel. "Nothing compares to the energy of a locker room, the gift of teaching and the thrill of competition." 

Goestenkors is the second assistant coach the Chippewas have hired this offseason, joining Sarah Miles. Miles was hired to replace Murriel Page, who left the Chippewas to become an assistant coach at Georgia Tech. 

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