The Xavier women’s basketball team has advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament twice in program history, and Amy Waugh was on hand both times—as a player in 2001 and an assistant coach in 2010. This month she starts her first season as head coach of the Musketeers.
Honestly, the players just think I’m old. They give me a hard time about my picture being on the walls. But there is also a level of respect because they know I had a successful playing career.
The biggest win in school history was probably beating Tennessee and going to our first ever Elite Eight. We fell a little short of the Final Four, but it was a great start to the tradition that’s been built here.
I know how Xavier works, and I like the small, close-knit feel. We bring in kids who maybe have been overlooked. We’re always going to be that underdog when we play the big-time schools. That fits my personality because I’ve worked hard for everything that I’ve earned, and that’s the mentality that our team is going to take as well.
Moving over a chair—nothing can really get you ready for it. The butterflies will be there, but once the ball is tipped up, the adrenaline starts pumping and takes over. I’m going to be a lot like I was as a player—intense, determined, disciplined, fundamental.
We lost a lot of great players—four of our five starters. It’s a new staff and at the same time, it’s a new team, which is a positive in a sense. We all have that chip on our shoulder that we have something to prove.
We were top five in the country for the past two years. It will be hard to stay at that level, but that’s our goal. We want to reach that first Final Four at Xavier.