Jennifer Azzi

Last updated
Jennifer Azzi

Jennifer Azzi Coach USF.jpg

Azzi as the coach of University of San Francisco
Personal information
Born (1968-08-31) August 31, 1968 (age 49)
Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Nationality American
Listed height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Listed weight 143 lb (65 kg)
Career information
High school Oak Ridge (Oak Ridge, Tennessee)
College Stanford (1986–1990)
WNBA draft 1999 / Round: 1 / Pick: 5th overall
Selected by the Detroit Shock
Playing career 1990–2003
Position Point guard
Number 8
Career history
As player:
1990–1991 Virtus Viterbo
1991–1993 US Valenciennes-Orchies
1993–1995 Arvika Basket
1996–1998 San Jose Lasers
1999 Detroit Shock
2000–2003 Utah Starzz/San Antonio Silver Stars
As coach:
2010–2016 University of San Francisco
Stats at
Stats at
Women's Basketball Hall of Fame

Jennifer Lynn Azzi (born August 31, 1968) [1] is a former basketball coach, most recently the head coach of the women's team at the University of San Francisco. [2] Azzi is also a former collegiate and professional basketball player, as well as an Olympic and FIBA world champion.

Basketball team sport played on a court with baskets on either end

Basketball is a team sport in which two teams, most commonly of five players each, opposing one another on a rectangular court, compete with the primary objective of shooting a basketball through the defender's hoop while preventing the opposing team from shooting through their own hoop. A field goal is worth two points, unless made from behind the three-point line, when it is worth three. After a foul, timed play stops and the player fouled or designated to shoot a technical foul is given one or more one-point free throws. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins, but if regulation play expires with the score tied, an additional period of play (overtime) is mandated.

The University of San Francisco (USF) is a Jesuit university in San Francisco, California. The school's main campus is located on a 55-acre (22 ha) setting between the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park. The main campus is nicknamed "The Hilltop", and part of the main campus is located on Lone Mountain, one of San Francisco's major geographical features. Its close historical ties with the City and County of San Francisco are reflected in the University's traditional motto, Pro Urbe et Universitate.


College years

Azzi received a scholarship and played point guard for Stanford University's women's basketball team from 1987 to 1990. During her four years at Stanford, the Cardinal compiled a 101-23 win-loss record, [3] and captured two Pac-10 titles.

Point guard basketball position

The point guard (PG), also called the one or point, is one of the five positions in a regulation basketball game. A point guard has perhaps the most specialized role of any position. Point guards are expected to run the team's offense by controlling the ball and making sure that it gets to the right player at the right time. Above all, the point guard must totally understand and accept their coach's game plan; in this way, the position can be compared to a quarterback in American football or a playmaker in association football (soccer). While the point guard must understand and accept the coach's gameplan, they must also be able to adapt to what the defense is allowing, and they also must control the pace of the game.

Stanford University private research university located in Stanford, California, United States

Leland Stanford Junior University is a private research university in Stanford, California. Stanford is known for its academic strength, wealth, proximity to Silicon Valley, and ranking as one of the world's top universities.

The Stanford Cardinal are the athletic teams that represent Stanford University. Stanford's program has won 119 NCAA team championships, as well as 23 consecutive NACDA Directors' Cups, awarded annually to the most successful overall college sports program in the nation. Stanford's teams compete at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I level as a member of the Pac-12 Conference, along with other schools from the western third of the United States.

During her senior year (1990), Azzi led the Cardinal to the NCAA Women's Division I Basketball Championship, [3] defeating Auburn.

Auburn University public university in Auburn, Alabama, United States

Auburn University is a land-grant and public research university in Auburn, Alabama, United States. With more than 23,000 undergraduate students and a total enrollment of more than 30,000 with 1,260 faculty members, Auburn is the second largest university in Alabama. Auburn University is one of the state's two public flagship universities.

Her individual accomplishments included:

Kodak American company

The Eastman Kodak Company is an American technology company that produces camera-related products with its historic basis on photography. The company is headquartered in Rochester, New York, and is incorporated in New Jersey. Kodak provides packaging, functional printing, graphic communications and professional services for businesses around the world. Its main business segments are Print Systems, Enterprise Inkjet Systems, Micro 3D Printing and Packaging, Software and Solutions, and Consumer and Film. It is best known for photographic film products.

An All-America team is a hypothetical American sports team composed of outstanding amateur players. These players are broadly considered by media and other relevant commentators as the best players in a particular sport, of a specific season, for each team position.

Wade Trophy US womens college basketball award

The Wade Trophy is an award presented annually to the best women's basketball player in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I competition. It is named after three–time national champion Delta State University coach Lily Margaret Wade. The award debuted in 1978 as the first–ever women's national player of the year award in college basketball. State Farm Insurance sponsors the award, and the trophy is presented at the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) National Convention.

Azzi graduated in 1990 with a Bachelor's Degree in economics.

Azzi went to middle school at Jefferson Junior High, in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Oak Ridge, Tennessee City in Tennessee, United States

Oak Ridge is a city in Anderson and Roane counties in the eastern part of the U.S. state of Tennessee, about 25 miles (40 km) west of Knoxville. Oak Ridge's population was 29,330 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Knoxville Metropolitan Area. Oak Ridge's nicknames include the Atomic City, the Secret City, the Ridge, and the City Behind the Fence.

Stanford statistics

Source [6]

  GP Games played  GS  Games started MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage 3P%  3-point field goal percentage FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game APG  Assists per game SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game PPG  Points per game Bold  Career high

USA Basketball

In 1988, Azzi was named to the Jones Cup team. The USA team ended the competition with a 3–2 record, but that was enough to secure the silver medal. Azzi averaged 5.4 points per game. [7]

Azzi was a member of the USA National team at the 1990 World Championships, held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The team won their opening round games fairly easily, with the closest of the first three games a 27-point victory over Czechoslovakia. Then they faced Cuba, a team that had beaten the USA in exhibition matches only a few weeks earlier. The USA team was losing at halftime, but came back to win 87–78. The USA team found itself behind at halftime to Canada in their next game, but came back to win easily 95–70. After an easy match against Bulgaria, in which Azzi hit three of four three-pointers, and scored a team high 13 points, the USA team faced Czechoslovakia again, end achieved an almost identical result, winning 87–59. In the title match, the USA team won the gold medal with a score of 88–78. Azzi averaged 4.6 points per game, and recorded 15 assists, second highest on the team. [8]

Azzi played with the USA team at the 1991 Pan American Games. The team finished with a record of 4–2, but managed to win the bronze medal. The USA team lost a three-point game to Brazil, then responded with wins over Argentina and Cuba, earning a spot in the medal round. The next game was a rematch against Cuba, and this time the team from Cuba won a five-point game. The USA beat Canada easily to win the bronze. Azzi averaged 6.7 points per game. [9]

Azzi was a member of the gold medal-winning U.S. women's basketball team at the 1994 Goodwill Games, which was held in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Azzi was named to the USA national team and competed in the 1994 World Championships, held in June 1994 in Sydney, Australia. The team was coached by Tara VanDerveer, and won their first six games, when they faced Brazil. In a closely contested, high-scoring game, Brazil hit ten of ten free throws in the final minute to secure a 110–107 victory. The USA won a close final game against Australia 100–95 to earn the bronze medal. Azzi averaged 4.9 points per game, while recording 16 assists, third highest on the team. [10]

She also won a gold medal while playing for the U.S. women's basketball team at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. [3]

Azzi played for the USA Basketball National Team in a five-game Australian Tour event in 1998, as part of the Goldmark Cup team. The USA and Australian teams had qualified for the 2000 Olympics, and agreed to play five games in five cities in Australia. The Australians won the first three games and the USA team won the last two. [11]

She was one of six core players selected for the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia, but she withdrew herself from consideration to avoid the extensive touring.

ABL career

Azzi began her professional basketball career playing in the United States when she joined the San Jose Lasers of the American Basketball League (ABL) from 1996 to 1999. She was one of the cofounders of the league. [3] Her participation in the league ended when the ABL declared bankruptcy on December 22, 1998. Shortly afterward, she started a training camp for adults in San Jose, California.

WNBA career

In 1999, Azzi was selected by the Detroit Shock in the first round (fifth overall) in the WNBA Draft. She helped lead the Shock into the playoffs that year. [3]

Just prior to the 2000 season, Azzi was traded to the Utah Starzz. [3] She remained with the team when the franchise relocated to San Antonio, Texas and changed its name to the San Antonio Silver Stars in 2003. [3]

In February 2004, Azzi announced her retirement from professional basketball.

Coaching career

Azzi became the head coach of the women's basketball team at the University of San Francisco in 2010. [12] On March 8, 2016, Azzi lead the Dons to a 70-68 upset over the BYU Cougars in the WCC tournament championship game to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, which was the Dons' first appearance since the 1996-97 season. [13] On September 15, 2016, Azzi stepped down as head coach of the Dons to pursue new career opportunities. [14]

Other Activities

Azzi served on the Board of Directors of USA Basketball for the 2005-2008 term. [15] She was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009. [16]

Azzi is now a motivational speaker, residing in Mill Valley, California. [17] She also runs a youth basketball camp every summer held at Tamalpais High School called Azzi Camp. [18]

In December 2014, Azzi was announced as one of the six recipients of the 2015 Silver Anniversary Awards, presented annually by the NCAA to outstanding former student-athletes on the 25th anniversary of the end of their college sports careers. The award is based on both athletic and professional success. [19]

Personal life

On March 31, 2016, Azzi publicly came out as gay, announcing her marriage to USF assistant Blair Hardiek, while introducing Golden State Warriors president Rick Welts at the Anti-Defamation League's Torch of Liberty Award ceremony at the Fairmont Hotel. About coming out, Azzi said, "I, too, lived a long time not being 100 percent honest. Kind of the don't-ask-don't-tell kinda of thing. And it's so stupid. I don't know why we do that, but we do that. I'm a college coach. Is it going to hurt me with recruiting? What are people going to think? And you are constantly worrying about those things. What I realized in watching Rick in his path and his journey is that there is nothing more powerful than living the truth. And the best thing I can do for my team is be authentic and true to myself." [20]

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
San Francisco Dons (West Coast Conference)(2010–present)
2010–11 San Francisco 4–25 1–13 8th
2011–12 San Francisco 5–25 3–12 8th
2012–13 San Francisco 12–19 4–12 8th
2013–14 San Francisco 12–19 6–12 T–7th
2014–15 San Francisco 19–14 8–10 6th WNIT First Round
2015–16 San Francisco 21–12 9–9 6th NCAA First Round
San Francisco: 73–114 (.390) 31–68 (.313)
Total: 73–114 (.390)

      National champion        Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion        Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion      Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


  1. "Women's Basketball Coaches Career". NCAA. Retrieved 23 Sep 2015.
  2. "Molly Goodenbour named USF women's basketball coach" . Retrieved 2016-09-29.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Porter p. 19
  4. "The Wade Trophy". Women's Basketball Coaches Association. Retrieved 30 Jun 2014.
  5. "Past Honda Sports Award Winners for Basketball". THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards Program. Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  6. "Women's Basketball Finest" (PDF). . Retrieved 2017-10-01.External link in |website= (help)
  7. "1988 Women's R. William Jones Cup". USA Basketball. June 10, 2010. Archived from the original on 7 September 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  8. "Eleventh World Championship -- 1990". USA Basketball. June 10, 2010. Archived from the original on 20 October 2015. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  9. "Eleventh Pan American Games -- 1991". USA Basketball. Feb 20, 2014. Archived from the original on 7 September 2015. Retrieved 15 Oct 2015.
  10. "Twelvth[sic] World Championship for Women -- 1994". USA Basketball. Retrieved 4 August 2014.
  11. "All-Time Women's National Team Roster". USA Basketball. Retrieved 4 August 2014.
  12. "Azzi introduced at San Francisco". ESPN. 23 April 2010. Retrieved 23 April 2010.
  13. "BYU women's basketball: Cougars upset by San Francisco in WCC final". Salt Lake Tribune. 2016-03-08. Retrieved 2016-03-08.
  14. "San Francisco women's basketball coach Jennifer Azzi resigns". 2016-09-15. Retrieved 2016-09-29.
  15. "2005-2008 USA Basketball Executive Committee" (PDF). USA Basketball. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2008. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
  16. "WBHOF Inductees". WBHOF. Retrieved 2009-08-01.
  17. Albee, Dave (January 17, 2007). "Jennifer Azzi: Hall-of-Famer moves to Marin". Marin Independent Journal. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  18. "Azzi Basketball Camp". Jennifer Azzi. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  19. "NCAA honors six former athletes with Silver Anniversary Awards" (Press release). NCAA. December 4, 2014. Retrieved December 20, 2014.

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