LIVONIA, Mich. – Madonna University Athletic Director Scott Kennell has announced that Rachel Steinbarger has been named the fourth head coach of the Crusaders women's basketball program and will also serve as the departments Senior Women's Administrator.
"We are excited to be able to have Rachel as our next head coach," said Kennell. "She has proven that she can win at multiple levels and we feel she can take the women's basketball program to the next level. Her student first approach and defensive philosophy are qualities that we feel will move the program forward. Rachel's success both playing and coaching prove she knows what it takes to get to the national tournament and our hope is that she can make Madonna a perennial contender."
Steinbarger takes over a program that has won 386 games in its 26 year history and has made 12 appearances in the conference tournament which included the last five consecutive seasons under former head coach Carl Graves. Madonna has made two trips to the NAIA National Tournament, that last coming in the 2002-03 campaign.
|ALL-TIME COACHING RECORDS|
|OVERALL: 68-83 (.428)|
OVERALL: 156-145 (.513)
OVERALL: 168-162 (.509)
"I am beyond excited and thrilled to have the opportunity to be part of such a great university like Madonna," said Steinbarger via email. "Having the opportunity to be a head coach in the NAIA has always been a dream and I am thankful God has blessed me with this opportunity."
In addition to the duties associated with being the head coach, Steinbarger will also be the first Senior Women's Administrator within the athletic department. She will act as the liaison to the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, assist in student-athlete eligibility and conduct student-athlete exit interviews.
This position, in conjunction with moving the women's basketball head coach position to full time, is being added to help improve the equality within the department and bring Madonna on par with other NAIA institutions.
Steinbarger comes to Madonna after two seasons as an assistant coach for NAIA Division I University of Great Falls (Mont.). In her first year at UGF she helped the Lady Argos advance to the program's second NAIA Tournament appearance and second trip to the NAIA Elite 8. She helped coach Erin Legel to NAIA All-American status in her senior year and helped coach 2017 Frontier Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Stephanie McDonagh.
Prior to her time at UGF, Steinbarger spent a year at Lancaster Bible College (Pa.), where she coached the program to a 24-6 record, a program record that still stands, and the NEAC South Division title in her only year as head coach. She was named NEAC Coach of the Year and the team advanced to the National Christian College Athletic Association Division II Tournament where it finished third.
Steinbarger began her coaching career as an assistant coach at Franklin College (Ind.), where the team finished with a two-year record of 35-18 to place second both years.
Steinbarger was a four-year starter and a co-captain while competing for Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion, Ind. IWU had a 115-26 record during her career and advanced to the NAIA National Tournament all four years, including two Elite Eight appearances and one Final Four.
She was an active member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and participated in three school-sponsored mission trips during her undergraduate career. She holds a master's degree from Liberty University in Christian ministries with an emphasis in leadership, and a bachelor's degree in sports and recreation management from IWU.
Steinbarger will begin on Monday, June 5, 2017.
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