MORGANTOWN, W.Va — WVU women’s basketball has a new head coach.

Director of Athletics Shane Lyons has announced that former University of South Dakota head coach Dawn Plitzuweit will replace Mike Carey in that role. Carey recently retired after 21 seasons at WVU a 34 total seasons as a collegiate head coach. 

“Dawn is a proven winner everywhere she has been, and her track record for sustained success is impressive,” Lyons said in a statement. “When we started our search, it was quite obvious that her reputation as a program builder and championship coach put her at the top of our list. Watching her lead her team to the Sweet 16 this year with wins over Ole Miss and Baylor brought her program a lot of new national attention, but those in the know about women’s basketball were not surprised by her success.

“She brings a 73% career winning percentage with her to Morgantown along with multiple 20-win seasons, conference championships and NCAA berths. I can’t wait for her to start leading our women’s basketball program to its next chapter. Our fans will not only be impressed with her character and leadership, but they will also enjoy the brand of basketball she will be bringing to the Coliseum.”

Plitzuweit boasts an impressive resume, which most recently includes the aforementioned trip to the Sweet 16 with the Coyotes this month. Her squad concluded the 2021-22 campaign with a 29-6 overall record and 17-1 record in the Summit League, winning the conference tournament title for the third straight season and reaching the NCAA Tournament for the fourth year in a row. 

Additionally, she helped South Dakota eclipse 20 wins in five of her six seasons and guided the Coyotes to the postseason each year. Plitzuweit was the fastest Summit League coach to reach 100 wins, doing so in her first 124 games, and holds the highest winning percentage in program history at USD.

Plitzuweit also holds the Summit League records for overall winning percentage (.814) and conference winning percentage (.892).

In 15 seasons as a head coach, Plitzuweit owns a career record of 346-129 (.728), including a 229-91 (.728) mark at the NCAA Division I level. During that span, she also has totaled 14 winning seasons and nine 20-win seasons, including two 30-win campaigns. Plitzuweit has reached the postseason in 14 of her 15 seasons as a head coach.

“I am so incredibly excited and humbled to be your women’s basketball coach at West Virginia University,” Plitzuweit said in a statement. “Thank you to President Gordon Gee, Shane Lyons, Keli Zinn and Matt Wells for this great opportunity, their confidence in me and for their tremendous support of our program.  Also, a very special thank you to Coach Mike Carey and the tremendous foundation which he built and congratulations on his retirement. I am absolutely thrilled to lead our Mountaineer program at the Flagship Institution in West Virginia. 

“I would also be remiss if I didn’t thank our players, administration and all of Coyote Nation at the University of South Dakota for everything they have done for me, my family and for our program. I will miss you all so much and hope that we can recruit you to cheer for the Mountaineers now.

“I just cannot wait to get to Morgantown to meet with our team and to connect with them.  Our mission will be to assist our young ladies in their development on the court, while also helping them become more confident young women off the court as well.  I am so excited to grow our program within the Morgantown community and the entire Mountain State! Let’s Go!”

Carey ended his tenure as WVU’s head coach as the program’s all-time wins leader. He won multiple coach of the year awards and led the Mountaineers to a Big 12 regular season title in 2014 and a conference tournament title in 2017.