BC hired Joanna Bernabei-McNamee as the new Women's Basketball Coach. Bernabei-McNamee comes to BC after successful runs at Albany and University of Pikeville. Prior to being a head coach, Bernabei-McNamee served as an assistant at Maryland and West Virginia. I don't know enough about Women's Basketball to know if Bernabei-McNamee will be a success at BC. What I do find interesting and relevant to the bigger picture is what her hire tells us about Martin Jarmond's process.
1. No ties to BC. Women's Basketball is a relatively low stakes hire for Jarmond. The program has not been good for a long time. While location and conference affiliation means we should be better, very few BC people are breathing down Jarmond's neck to make BC Women's Basketball elite. He could have hired someone with ties to the program (a former assistant, a former player, etc.) and kept those who do care happy. Now that model didn't work with Erik Johnson, but it still would have been low risk. Instead, he hired a true outsider.
2. No ties to Jarmond. Many ADs gravitate towards coaches they know and have worked with before. Unless we hear otherwise in the press conference, there is no prior connection between Bernabei-McNamee and our current AD. He didn't even take the easy route of hiring a respected Big Ten assistant.
3. Track record of success as a Head Coach. Bernabei-McNamee has won in both her prior stops. Now there are always coaches who reach the Peter Principle once they make the leap to a more competitive conference, but a history of winning is not a bad thing. It is something she can sell to recruits and indicates she can handle the ups and downs of a season.
4. He didn't just pluck an assistant from an ACC or Women's Basketball power. It would have been easy to pick a UConn assistant or Notre Dame assistant and hope he/she rebuild's BC in a winning image of those schools. But there is plenty of risk in that approach. Often the key ingredient is the head coach and the assistant doesn't have the tools to do it on his/her own.
I like what I read and see about Bernabei-McNamee. I think her success in Albany and history recruiting major conferences is a good sign. I also like that Jarmond didn't limit himself to the typical criteria often involved in a college search.