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April 2014


Dear Abbot Pennings, 

Is it true that women’s basketball coach Connie Tilley has achieved coaching success in other college sports?

Rachel Mueller ’14


My dearest Rachel,
Coach Tilley is indeed a remarkably accomplished woman. I am very delighted to assist you in your quest for information about her accomplishments. 

You are correct, this year commemorates Coach Tilley’s 37th basketball season. What an achievement! 

Coach Tilley has coached other college sports in addition to basketball, including men’s and women’s golf and volleyball. She also founded the softball program here at St. Norbert College. Few of our readers may know that, while doing graduate work at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Coach Tilley guided the women’s tennis team to a seventh-place finish at nationals. 

I would like to add my warmest congratulations to the plaudits of others on the happy occasion of our dear coach’s admission to a remarkable club. On Jan. 22, Coach Tilley became only the 13th coach in NCAA Division III women’s basketball history to reach 600 career wins, as the Green Knights rolled to a 73-48 win over Beloit College in a Midwest Conference game at Flood Arena. Coach Tilley reached the achievement in her hometown in her first attempt at the milestone, and improved to 609-277 by the close of the 2013-14 season. It’s no wonder the basketball court at Schuldes Sports Center is named in her honor!

Incidentally, I am also happy to be reminded that Beloit was also the scene of Coach Tilley‘s 900th collegiate win (multiple sports combined), which she achieved on Feb. 8, 2012, against the Beloit College women’s basketball team. 

Further felicitations from us all are in order upon the news that Coach Tilley has been named Midwest Conference Coach of the Year, the sixth time she has earned that honor. 

My warmest congratulations, too, to our other coaches honored at the close of this remarkable winter season: NCHA Coach of the Year, Rob Morgan (Women’s Hockey), and MWC Coach of the Year, Gary Grzesk (Men’s Basketball). We certainly can boast of a fine sporting community here at St. Norbert College!

Responses to “Ask the Abbot” questions are penned by St. Norbert College staff in the name of Abbot Bernard Pennings, O.Praem., who founded St. Norbert College in 1898.

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