Brown chooses Monique LeBlanc as its new women’s head coach

Monique LeBlanc takes over the helm of the Bown women’s basketball program after a nine-year tenure at Merrimack. (Brown Athletics)

On Friday afternoon, Brown Athletic Director Jack Hayes announced the hiring of Monique LeBlanc as the Bears’ new women’s basketball coach, the fifth in program history.

LeBlanc, a native of Cumberland, R.I., will arrive in Providence after a nine-year tenure at Merrimack College.  This past season, when the Warriors made the jump from Division II to Division I, LeBlanc had her best season with a 20-10 record and a 13-5 third-place finish in the Northeast Conference.

In addition to leading Merrimack on the court, LeBlanc also held the position of Associate Athletic Director from 2012-2020.  Prior to joining the Warriors, she was an assistant coach at Northern Arizona from 2008-2011 and Bucknell from 2005-2008.  At her alma mater, she helped the Bison to two Patriot League championships in 2007 and 2008, as well as an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2008.

In her nine years as a head coach, LeBlanc has an overall record of 129-121 with a 109-112 mark during her time leading the Warriors in the Northeast 10 (NE10).  In those first eight years, her team made it into the league’s conference tournament 5 times with its best result a semifinal appearance in 2013.

In his choice of LeBlanc, Hayes made his second straight pick of a former NE10 head coach who transitioned her team into Division 1.  Sarah Behn was in charge of UMass-Lowell as she moved the River Hawks into the America East Conference in 2013-2014 before coming over to Brown.

Behn, who resigned her position on March 23, led the Bears for six seasons, compiling a 74-96 (20-64 Ivy) record with her best season coming in 2016-17 with a tie for fourth and an appearance in the inaugural Ivy Tournament.

There is also an on-the-court connection between LeBlanc and Behn, as Tyler Patch, a Brown assistant from 2014-2018, was Merrimack’s lead assistant for the last two seasons.

There is no word at this time on whether Patch, a former guest on Inside Ivy Hoops, will return to the sidelines of the Pizzitola Center.

 

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