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Jennifer Marie Rizzotti (born May 15, 1974)[1] is a retired American collegiate and professional basketball player, and current Division I coach at George Washington University.[2]

Jennifer Rizzotti
Jen Rizzotti at Govenor's Mansion.jpg
Current position
TitleHead coach
TeamGeorge Washington University
ConferenceAtlantic 10
Record49–44 (.527)
Biographical details
Born (1974-05-15) May 15, 1974 (age 45)
White Plains, New York, U.S.
Alma materUniversity of Connecticut
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1999–2016Hartford
2016–presentGeorge Washington
Head coaching record
Overall365–260 (.584)
Accomplishments and honors
Championships
Awards
As coach
  • 2× America East Coach of the Year (2006, 2007)
As player

High schoolEdit

Rizzotti attended New Fairfield High School in New Fairfield, Connecticut. The basketball court at the New Fairfield town park was named after Rizzotti in honor of her achievements. She also attended ASIJ in Tokyo, Japan.

CollegeEdit

From 1992 to 1996, she was one of the stars of the women's basketball team at the University of Connecticut. She was the starting point guard on the Huskies first national championship team in 1995, which recorded a perfect season, winning all 35 games. Rizzotti's picture was on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine in recognition of the perfect season.[3] Jen was awarded the prestigious Honda-Broderick Cup for 1995-96, presented to the athlete "most deserving of recognition as the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year".[4] She was named the 1996 Associated Press Player of the Year.[5] Rizzotti was a member of the inaugural class of inductees to the University of Connecticut women's basketball "Huskies of Honor" recognition program.[6] Rizzotti won the Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award during the 1995-96 basketball season.[7] This award is given to the best women's basketball player in the country under 5'6' tall. During the 1995-96 season Jennifer set school records for assists with 212 and steals with 112. Jennifer graduated with a degree in biology.

Sports Illustrated did a series of thirteen photographs featuring players on teams that were chasing or achieved undefeated seasons. The cover photo of Jennifer Rizzoti racing upcourt is one of the photos in the collection.[8]

USA Basketball - playerEdit

Rizzotti was invited to be a member of the Jones Cup team representing the US in 1996. She helped the team to a 9–0 record, and the gold medal in the event. Rizzotti averaged 2.6 points per games, while recording 26 assists, highest on the team.[9]

Awards and honorsEdit

ProfessionalEdit

She began her career as a professional basketball player playing for the New England Blizzard, of the now defunct American Basketball League. During that time she was a 2-time All-Star,[5] Rizzotti was a member of the Houston Comets after being drafted in 1999,[12] and played for the Comets in 1999 and 2000. The Comets won the League Championship both seasons.[13] In 2001, she was traded to the Detroit Shock, but a month later, she was traded to the Cleveland Rockers.[13] She played for the Cleveland Rockers from 2001-2003. Rizzotti was selected in the dispersal draft by the Detroit Shock in January 2004, but she retired from the WNBA.[13]

CoachingEdit

Rizzotti is currently the head basketball coach at George Washington University in Washington, DC. She previously spent 17 seasons as the head women's basketball coach at the University of Hartford, where she led the Hawks to four America East Conference championships and six trips to the NCAA Tournament. She was named America East Coach of the Year in 2006, 2007 and 2010.[14] In 2010 Rizzotti guided Hartford to an undefeated regular season in the America East Conference, and was one of the 10 finalists up for the Kay Yow Coach of the Year.

Rizzotti served as the head coach of the USA Basketball U18 team, at the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women in June 2010 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs CO.[15][16] She previously served as an assistant coach of the U18 team, assisting head coach Doug Bruno in 2006, when the team went 4-0 to win the gold medal.[17]

In 2011, Rizzotti was named USA Basketball National Coach of the Year. She was the head coach for the USA U18 team, which won the gold medal at the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship. She continued as head coach of the U19 team and guided the team to another gold medal at the FIBA U19 World Championship games held in Chile.[18]

Hall of FameEdit

Rizzotti was inducted in the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in June 2013. In her emotional acceptance speech she summarized, "I'm in the Hall of Fame because I played at the right school, at the right time with the right teammates, and I was taught to be a champion by the best coach who's ever coached the game." [19] Her credentials included point guard on the 1995 National Championship team, and winner of the Wade Trophy and AP national player of the year award.[20][21]

Personal lifeEdit

Rizzotti grew up in New Fairfield, Connecticut and graduated from New Fairfield High School in 1992.[22] She is the daughter of Tom and Carol Rizzotti.[22]

Rizzotti was inducted into the Connecticut Women's Basketball Hall Of Fame in 2001.[13][23]

Rizzotti married University of Hartford assistant, Bill Sullivan in July 1999. The two welcomed their first child, Holden Thomas Sullivan, born (2005-04-16) 16 April 2005 (age 14). The couple's second child, Conor, was born on (2008-07-08) 8 July 2008 (age 11).

Rizzotti was honored by her alma mater, the University of Connecticut, as the winner of the Red O'Neill Award, an award given annually to a former student athlete who has "gone on to distinguish themselves in their chosen career".[24]

Rizzotti was honored by The University of Hartford in 2010, as Commencement speaker. Additionally she received an Honorary Doctorate Degree from the University.[25]

University of Connecticut statisticsEdit

Jennifer Rizzotti Statistics[26] at University of Connecticut
Year G FG FGA PCT 3FG 3FGA PCT FT FTA PCT REB AVG A TO B S MIN PTS AVG
1992-93 29 116 288 0.403 53 142 0.373 73 118 0.619 125 4.3 104 116 1 60 1006 358 12.3
1993-94 33 110 239 0.46 54 126 0.429 52 78 0.667 111 3.4 150 90 4 80 992 326 9.9
1994-95 35 156 308 0.506 57 138 0.413 69 94 0.734 97 2.8 161 86 2 98 905 438 12.5
1995-96 38 148 335 0.442 43 158 0.272 79 112 0.705 126 3.3 222 115 2 112 1230 418 11.0
Totals 135 530 1170 0.453 207 564 0.367 273 402 0.679 459 3.4 637 407 9 350 4133 1540 11.1

Head coaching recordEdit

Source:[27][28]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Hartford Hawks (America East Conference) (1999–2016)
1999–2000 Hartford 14–14 9–9 5th
2000–01 Hartford 15–14 9–9 T–4th
2001–02 Hartford 16–15 9–7 T–4th NCAA First Round
2002–03 Hartford 7–21 5–11 8th
2003–04 Hartford 18–12 9–9 T–4th
2004–05 Hartford 22–9 13–5 2nd NCAA First Round
2005–06 Hartford 27–4 15–1 1st NCAA Second Round
2006–07 Hartford 25–9 15–1 1st WNIT Second Round
2007–08 Hartford 28–6 14–2 1st NCAA Second Round
2008–09 Hartford 20–12 14–2 2nd WNIT Second Round
2009–10 Hartford 27–5 16–0 1st NCAA First Round
2010–11 Hartford 17–16 11–5 T–3rd NCAA First Round
2011–12 Hartford 19–13 10–6 3rd WNIT First Round
2012–13 Hartford 21–12 10–6 3rd WNIT First Round
2013–14 Hartford 13–18 9–7 5th
2014–15 Hartford 16–17 8–8 5th
2015–16 Hartford 11–19 7–9 6th
Hartford: 316–216 (.594) 183–97 (.654)
George Washington Colonials (Atlantic 10 Conference) (2016–present)
2016–17 George Washington 20–10 13–3 T-1st WNIT First Round
2017–18 George Washington 19–13 10–6 T-5th NCAA First Round
2018–19 George Washington 10-20 7-9 T-8th


George Washington: 49–43 (.533) 30–18 (.625)
Total: 365–259 (.585)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ "Jennifer Rizzotti". George Washington University. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
  2. ^ Courant, Hartford. "It's Official: Jen Rizzotti Leaving UHart To Coach At George Washington". courant.com. Retrieved 2016-04-15.
  3. ^ "SI Covers". Sports Illustrated. pp. Cover. Retrieved 2009-09-28.
  4. ^ "Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year". Archived from the original on 2011-07-12. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
  5. ^ a b "Jennifer Rizzotti, Head Women's Basketball Coach". University of Hartford. Archived from the original on August 9, 2016. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
  6. ^ "Women's Basketball 1995 National Championship Team to be Recognized as "Huskies of Honor"". Retrieved 2009-07-24.
  7. ^ "Frances Pomeroy Naismith". Women's Basketball Coaches Association. Archived from the original on 2014-07-15. Retrieved 30 Jun 2014.
  8. ^ "In Search of Perfection". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 10 September 2011.
  9. ^ "1996 Women's R. William Jones Cup". USA Basketball. June 10, 2010. Archived from the original on 7 September 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  10. ^ "PAST HONDA SPORTS AWARD WINNERS FOR BASKETBALL". THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards Program. Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  11. ^ "Past Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year Winners (Honda Cup)". THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards Program. Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  12. ^ "Houston Comets Draft History". Retrieved 2009-07-06.
  13. ^ a b c d Porter p 399
  14. ^ "Coach of the Year". Archived from the original on 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2009-07-06.
  15. ^ "Draw Announced For 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship For Women". USA Basketball. Archived from the original on 5 February 2013. Retrieved 29 March 2010.
  16. ^ "College Rizzotti To Coach U.S. U-18 Team". Hartford Courant. 30 March 2010. Retrieved 30 March 2010.
  17. ^ "USA Women's FIBA Americas U18 Championship All-Time Coaching Staff". USA Basketball. Archived from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010.
  18. ^ "Jennifer Rizzotti Named USA Basketball Coach Of The Year". Hartford Courant. Retrieved 7 January 2012.
  19. ^ Cornelius, Maria M. (June 9, 2013). "Six enter Women's Basketball HOF". ESPN. Retrieved 9 Jun 2013.
  20. ^ "The Wade Trophy". Women's Basketball Coaches Association. Retrieved 30 Jun 2014.
  21. ^ "They're the class of 2013". ESPN. June 7, 2013. Retrieved 9 Jun 2013.
  22. ^ a b Porter p 398
  23. ^ "Connecticut Women's Basketball Hall Of Fame". Connecticut Women's Basketball Hall Of Fame. Archived from the original on 2008-07-06. Retrieved 2009-09-28.
  24. ^ "Hartford coach honored by UConn". Hartford Courant. Retrieved 21 April 2010.
  25. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-05-27. Retrieved 2010-05-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  26. ^ "UConn Media Guide" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on December 18, 2008. Retrieved 15 December 2008.
  27. ^ "All-time standings" (PDF). Women's Basketball Record Book. America East Conference. pp. 1–4. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
  28. ^ "Am. East Standings - 2015-16". ESPN. Retrieved August 9, 2016.

ReferencesEdit

  • David L. Porter, ed. (2005). Basketball: A Biographical Dictionary. Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-30952-6.

External linksEdit