WOMEN'S BASKETBALL | Jim Lewis Named Interim Head Coach
Published: Friday, October 25, 2013
Updated: Friday, October 25, 2013 01:10
On Thursday afternoon, Georgetown University Director of Athletics Lee Reed named Jim Lewis as the interim head coach of the women’s basketball program.
The decision came two weeks after former Head Coach Keith Brown resigned amid mounting evidence that he used verbally abusive language toward his players, including audio tapes of training sessions and the testimonies of his former players. At the time of his resignation, the university was investigating allegations of misconduct.
The assistant coaches, including Tim Valentine — who was also placed on leave with Brown before he was cleared of wrongdoing — conducted team practices while the university searched for a replacement head coach. Though Lewis’ hiring brings a measure of stability to the program ahead of their first game Nov. 8, it does not resolve the lingering questions surrounding Brown’s misconduct and the subsequent investigation.
Lewis has 44 years of experience coaching at the college and high school levels and in the WNBA. Most recently, he was an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Sparks.
“He has a tremendous background in coaching and leadership in a career that has made him very well respected, not only in the Washington, D.C. area but nationally, as well,” Reed said, according to a press release.
Lewis’ first big coaching break came when he was named head coach of the George Mason women’s basketball team in 1984, a position he held for 14 years. During his tenure at George Mason, he coached the team to eight winning seasons and compiled an overall record of 201-177. He also served as the first head coach for the Washington Mystics in 1997 and 1998 before heading north to take the top job for the women’s basketball team at Fordham in 2000. After six seasons at Fordham, Lewis was an assistant coach for the Minnesota Lynx for a season and then the director of scouting for three years with the Indiana Fever. In 2011, Lewis returned to George Mason as an assistant coach for one season before taking the assistant coaching position with the Sparks.
“It’s truly an honor to have a chance to represent one of the greatest universities in the world,” Lewis said in a press release.
Lewis will begin his new job immediately and will be formally introduced at Basketball Tip Off tonight in McDonough Arena.