Kansas State fans have a love, hate relationship with one basketball coach. The other coach received a little post-season love this week.
Wildcat’s women’s coach Jeff Mittie received some important recognition Wednesday. He is the women’s basketball 4-year college coach of the year.
The honor from the Kansas Basketball Coaches Association comes at an important time. I feel Mittie is often overlooked in Manhattan.
In the first place, those who enjoy women’s basketball know the Wildcats are very fortunate Mittie is running the program.
Others who only consider the big picture of college sports at Kansas State will miss what he has accomplished.
On the other hand, consider the rival program in Lawrence. Enough said.
There is no comparison to what Mittie is doing.
Now, beyond in-state comparisons, Mittie is doing some amazing things.
He led the team to 23 wins this season and another trip to the NCAA tournament. Don’t forget they lost to eventual NCAA final four team Stanford. I’m still upset about the lousy attendance at Bramalge Coliseum for that game.
As a matter of fact, Mittie is also the first women’s coach in Kansas State history to take a team to the NCAA Tournament in two of their first three seasons, according to a media release from university.
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Not only did the ‘Cats get to the NCAA tournament, the team finished 4th in a tough Big 12 conference.
Upsets wins over then nationally ranked West Virginia and a revenge win over Oklahoma helped them get the job done.
Equally important, and one of the biggest accomplishments for Mittie this season came during a loss.
I was very impressed when Mittie scheduled the defending national champions. At that time, the Huskies were going for their 84th straight win.
On the other hand, who wants to play them? (Forget what happened in this year’s National Semifinal.)
After all, bringing the Huskies to Manhattan says a lot about Mittie and is part of why he received this post-season honor.