Hawkeyes coach Lisa Bluder walks away a winner even without coach of the year trophy

Hawkeyes head coach Lisa Bluder was honored at the Naismith Trophy ceremony as a finalist for coach of the year.

She didn’t win – that award went to undefeated South Carolina’s Dawn Staley – but Lisa Bluder says there are plenty of positives to be proud of.

“You know, anytime that you receive a coaching award, it’s all about your staff that you’ve surrounded yourself with – and I’ve surrounded myself with a really good group,” Bluder said.

“And obviously the success of the team throughout the year. So that’s the student-athletes and the commitment that they make.”

Caitlin Clark gets most of the credit, but Bluder rallied a team that lost two starters to a No. 1 seed and a second straight Final Four.

“All she did was got us to believe in one another, you know, put some people at positions that maybe they weren’t comfortable in and, you know, she just really is one of the greatest people I’ve ever been around at building a team and getting them to all buy in to the culture,” Clark said.

“So I couldn’t be more happy for her. She definitely deserves it.”

Có thể là hình ảnh về 4 người, mọi người đang chơi bóng rổ, mọi người đang chơi bóng chuyền và văn bản

“Lisa did a phenomenal job leading and the players just did a great job of staying the course and you know, I think they’re really good,” associate head coach Jan Jensen said. “They’re a seasoned group and, you know, they did all the work we just tried to help guide them.”

Bluder is now responsible for three of the last six NPOYs.

For more Hawkeyes coverage, follow @BlakeHornTV and @HawkeyeHQ on Twitter and Facebook. You can find Hawkeye Headquarters at HawkeyeHQ.com all season.

Lisa Bluder is honored as a finalist for coach of the year at the Naismith Trophy presentation in Cleveland. (Blake Hornstein, Hawkeye Headquarters)

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