Australia Women’s National Basketball League’s most successful coach, Carrie Graf, has joined the University of Canberra in the newly created position as the Director of Sport.
The former Olympic and seven-time WNBL championship-winning coach will overlook all areas of sport at UC and will begin her role on January 22, 2018.
Graff will oversee the University’s sporting teams, the UC Capitals and women’s rugby sevens, and will also manage the participation in Australian University Sports programs and University Games. Graff will also spend time engaging with sporting clubs both on and off campus.
Ms Graf, the former Australian Opals coach, spent nearly 15 seasons coaching the UC Capitals where she guided the club to six WNBL championships, making it Canberra’s most successful professional sporting team.
She was also named WNBL Coach of the Year in 2007 and 2008. She called time on her coaching career in 2015 to spend more time with her family.
Ms Graf said she was really excited about the new opportunity.
“There’s wonderful potential for sport to play an even bigger role in university life. My role is to help bring the University’s vision of becoming a leading sporting university to life.”
“It’s a massive task and it will take time but I’m confident we can build something unique and special at the University of Canberra,” Ms Graf said.
It’s been two years since Ms Graf left the WNBL and while she’s looking forward to reconnecting with her former team, she said she won’t be playing favourites.
“I’ll be looking at all areas of sport at UC – our professional teams, elite athletes program, local sporting clubs and our relationship with the Brumbies, who live on campus alongside the UC Capitals.”
University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Deep Saini welcomed the appointment.
“Carrie brings a wealth of knowledge and experience as a player, Olympic and championship-winning coach and mentor,” Professor Saini said.
“She has a long association with the University having been appointed our first coach in residence in 2013, as an adjunct professor lecturing in our sports studies program, and as a former coach of the UC Capitals.
“Carrie knows what it takes to succeed at sport at the highest level and I look forward to working with her. I’m delighted that she will be bringing her expertise and passion for sport to the University of Canberra.”
Ms Graf’s contribution to basketball was recognised when she was inducted into Basketball Australia’s Hall of Fame earlier this year, alongside former teammate and interim UC Capitals General Manager Lucille Bailie.