After leading Northwestern women’s basketball to three straight seasons of very impressive play, head coach Joe McKeown signed a new contract extension that will keep him at the helm through the 2024-25 season, NU Director of Athletics and Recreation Dr. Derrick Gragg announced Thursday.
.@Joe_McKeown700 is here to stay.— Northwestern Women’s Basketball (@nuwbball) October 8, 2021
https://t.co/haCHq6xueR#GoCats x #LockedN pic.twitter.com/1rPdI1L313
McKeown first arrived in Evanston in 2008 after coaching George Washington for nearly 20 years. He led the Colonials to six straight NCAA Tournament appearances as well as nine straight postseason appearances before departing.
While his first season leading the Wildcats was a rough one, McKeown quickly rebounded and led the ‘Cats to an 18-15 record in his second season, good enough to qualify for the WNIT. They would go on to make the WNIT the following year before hitting a bit of a slump, failing to make the postseason in the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.
In the 2014-15 season, McKeown and his team finally broke through, making the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1997 (where they lost to McKeown’s George Washington). While Northwestern would fall to Arkansas in the first round of this tournament, it marked an impressive milestone for McKeown and his coaching staff.
The years following that tournament appearance have been nothing short of remarkable. In his last five seasons, McKeown has led NU to a 95-59 record, which included an unbelievable Big Ten-winning 26-4 season in 2019-20 that was cut short by the pandemic, after which McKeown was awarded Big Ten Coach of the Year.
Women’s basketball officially returns on November 10 against UIC. Congratulations to Coach McKeown!