Chancellor Dugan returns to USI on Thursday night, but this time as the coach of the Bellarmine women’s basketball team. The former USI coach can’t wait. Actually, she’d rather not have to meet her former assistant, USI head coach Rick Stein. But that’s the subject of my latest column here. Instead,let’s get into why she left Division I to return to Division II.
One reason: she quit her job. Actually, she was pushed out of her job when the president and acting athletic director at Florida Atlantic offered her a one-year contract when she wanted a three-year deal. Granted, she did not have a winning record at FAU. But I think she was also relieved she was leaving, which seems to be another reason for her exit.
“Florida is nice — for the first couple of years,” she said. “Then it’s the same every day. You get tired of it.”
Then, when she took her job in Louisville with Bellarmine, Floridians thought she was nuts.
“When they found out I was going back north, they were saying, ‘Oh gosh, you’re gonna freeze up there. It’s cold!’ But I just like the change of seasons. I like that basketball is number one in the state of Kentucky. It matters to people. In Florida, everybody knows everything about football. In Kentucky, everybody knows everything about basketball.”