After nearly a month-long search, Binghamton University pegged Linda Cimino as head women’s basketball coach. Cimino spent the last eight seasons at the helm of Division II Caldwell College.
“My dream was to be standing here today, and my dream came true,” Cimino said at her introductory press conference Friday. “I am really looking forward to trying to build a program, develop the players we currently have on the roster, and bring in some new pieces to the puzzle to help us improve every day.”
Cimino had tremendous success while rebuilding Caldwell’s program. She inherited a team that recorded only eight wins, and in year two on the job she recorded 18 victories. Cimino consistently had the team in the top half of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference, winning at least 17 games in the last four seasons. She finished her tenure at Caldwell with a 128-100 record.
“It wasn’t easy to leave Caldwell,” Cimino said. “I had a really good situation there. I absolutely adored and loved my girls. Leaving them was probably one of the hardest things I had to do.”
While at Caldwell, Cimino dominated the Division II recruiting landscape. She recruited and coached three straight CACC rookies of the year, guided 12 players to all-conference selections and lured 2014 Daktronics East Region player of the year Jeanette Anderson to Caldwell. Cimino believes that this success will only help her to improve a fledging Binghamton program.
“I feel like I was born for this job,” she said. “I really think Binghamton is a sleeping giant in the America East, and I feel like we can do great things here.”
Cimino will look to transform a Bearcats team which has been in steady decline over the last three seasons, bottoming out in 2013-14, when BU recorded only five victories.
Rebuilding the program will not happen overnight, but Cimino has some goals that she believes can be accomplished within a small time frame.
“Short-term goals I have for this program are to revive the spirit around the women’s basketball program, put fans back in the arena, make everyone proud of who we are, and the women on the team, I want to help realize their potential and get better every single day,” she said.
Now armed with a promising young coach, the Bearcats will look forward to offseason workouts, as they begin to put the struggles of the 2013-2014 season behind them.
“Linda really stood out to me as an established head coach,” Director of Athletics Patrick Elliott said. “She has demonstrated a commitment to academic excellence and student-athlete welfare. Everybody I talked to told me how great of a recruiter she was. The other thing they told me that was special is that she just works. She is tireless. Going forward, our women’s basketball program is in great hands.”