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Jacksonville University Director of Athletics Brad Edwards announced the hiring of Yolett McPhee-McCuin as women’s basketball head coach on April 12, 2013. McPhee-McCuin, who also serves as the Bahamian women’s national team coach, takes over immediately as the third head coach in the 15-year history of Jacksonville women’s basketball after spending the last three seasons on staff at Clemson.
“Yolett will be a great addition to our athletics department, and to the University as a whole,” said Edwards. “She’s a proven top-notch recruiter whose results-driven vision is certain to bring success to our women’s basketball program.”
With her first year at JU under wraps, Coach McCuin directed the Dolphins to a record of 13-17 with an Atlantic Sun tip of 10-8. A 67-65 victory over Mercer earned the Fins the No. 4 seed in the A-Sun tournament, an achievement not seen since the 2008-09 campaign, and provided the team the right to host a home quarterfinal game. Nominated for the WBCA Maggie Dixon Rookie Coach of the Year Award at the season’s end, JU is excited for where McCuin will take the team in the future.
On June 22, Coach McCuin was named to the 2013 New England Basketball Hall of Fame and joined nine other recipients of the Pathfinder Award for their distinguished achievement outside of New England.
A ten-year coaching veteran, McPhee-McCuin comes to JU following a three-year stint at Clemson where she was tagged as one of the top assistants in the nation by the National Women’s Basketball Insider. During her time in South Carolina she solidified her reputation as one of the most knowledgeable recruiters in the game today. This past season alone McPhee-McCuin spearheaded the No. 16 ranked recruiting class in the country, landing five McDonalds All-American nominees for the Tigers.
As the first Bahamian female to sign a Letter of Intent to a Division I school, McPhee-McCuin has become a trailblazer for aspiring females from her home country of the Bahamas. She is also the first female from her country to coach at a Division I program and the first black female head coach at JU. Named the Bahamian women’s national team coach in March, McPhee-McCuin will bring a wealth of international experience to the First Coast.
Throughout her ten-year coaching career, McPhee-McCuin has made a large impact in each of the communities that she has come across. She developed a foundation in the Bahamas called Back2Basics, which helps the development of children through education and athletics. Additionally, she was involved in numerous community service projects at her other coaching stops.
Prior to her time at Clemson, she was on staff at Pitt for two years. With the Panthers, McPhee-McCuin helped guide the program to a pair of post season appearances highlighted by a No. 14 national ranking and a Sweet 16 appearance in 2009.
McPhee-McCuin spent the 2007-08 season at Portland, where she acted as recruiting coordinator and also helped run the team’s marketing efforts. With her guidance, the team posted their best record in 10 years, and developed guard Katie Burris to all-conference honors after averaging less than one point per game the previous season.
After starting her coaching career as the assistant coach for Frank Phillips College [Texas], she went to work at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. Here, she earned her Master’s in physical education, recording a 4.0 GPA.
McPhee-McCuin received a bachelor’s degree in business management and administration from the University of Rhode Island in 2004. She played two seasons at Miami-Dade Community College, before playing two seasons with the Rams. She appeared in 56 games for URI, and helped lead the Rams to the 2003 A-10 Championship game.
An active member of the coaching community, McPhee-McCuin is a member of the “So You Want to be a Coach “ program through the WBCA, and she holds membership in the Black Coaches and Administrators Association. In 2013, McCuin joined the Center of Coaching Excellence's yearly class.
The former Yolett McPhee is married to Kelly McCuin, and the couple welcomed their first child, Yasmine Lee, to their family in September of 2012.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT YOLETT MCPHEE-MCCUIN
“Yolett is a young energetic coach that has a true passion for the sport. She is well known throughout our profession as one of the top recruiters in the game and has built a reputation as a tireless worker who will not stop until the job is done. She is the type of person that makes a room light up just by walking through the door and will no doubt have a positive impact to the University and the surrounding community.”
— Dawn Staley, University of South Carolina Head Coach
“When I met Yolett as a young assistant coach I knew that one day she would have her own program. Her passion for the game is unmatched and she has built a reputation as a relentless recruiter signing great players at every stop. Jacksonville University has made a fine choice in selecting a leader in the community who possess great people skills, and extensive “x and o” knowledge. Yolett will inspire fans, her team, and staff to take pride in their program with her tireless work ethic and infectious enthusiasm!”
— LaChina Robinson, ESPN Women’s Basketball Analyst
“Yolett is a great hire for Jacksonville. She is full of energy and is a dynamite recruiter that will be able to have an immediate impact on the program. She is one of the top up and coming coaches in the game and I expect her to do a fantastic job.”
— Terri Williams-Flournoy, Auburn University Head Coach
“When Yolett first came to work for me I knew it would only be a matter of time before she’d be running her own program. She is an aggressive recruiter who is as well connected as anyone I’ve known in the industry. She is very loyal and will certainly be a great ambassador for Jacksonville University and the women’s basketball program.”
— Jim Sollars, University of Portland Head Coach