CHICAGO – University of Chicago Interim Director of Athletics & Recreation Rosalie Resch announced the hiring of Maria Williamson as head women's basketball coach on Thursday.
"I am very pleased to welcome Maria Williamson as our next women's basketball coach," Resch said. "She emerged from a very strong field of candidates as the perfect choice to lead our program. We were impressed with her experience, her focus on the development of the athletes, and her vision for the program. She is eager to get started and we are excited to welcome her to our staff."
Williamson spent the previous four seasons serving as assistant women's basketball coach and recruiting coordinator at Loyola University Chicago. The Ramblers increased their win total each year of her tenure, with the 2019-20 team posting the program's best overall record in seven campaigns.
Her prior assistant coaching experience includes three years at Dartmouth College and four years at Navy. She was the recruiting coordinator and ran the defense for the Big Green, leading the squad to a pair of top 100 defensive rankings nationally. Navy qualified for the NCAA Tournament in three-straight seasons during her time while simultaneously winning the program's first three Patriot League Tournament titles.
"I am beyond thrilled to join the University of Chicago as its next head women's basketball coach," Williamson said. "The success of this program, in addition to the incredible academic prestige of the University, make this a true dream for me. As a coach and an educator, one of my primary goals is to empower the young women on our team to accomplish more than they ever thought possible. I am excited to see this happen at the University of Chicago with these high-achieving and competitive women.
"I would like to thank Interim Athletic Director Rosalie Resch and the entire search committee for this opportunity," she continued. "I cannot wait to connect with our student-athletes and become a part of the UChicago and Hyde Park communities."
Williamson makes her return to the NCAA Division III landscape – she was a four-year letterwinner in women's basketball for Bowdoin College. During her four years on the roster, the Polar Bears posted a cumulative record of 100-19 (.840 winning percentage). Bowdoin made four NCAA postseason appearances, advancing to Elite Eight twice and the second round twice. Williamson was a First Team All-Conference selection as a senior point guard. She is still ranked ninth in the school's career records with 300 assists.
Williamson graduated from Bowdoin in 2009 with a bachelor's degree in sociology. She later earned her master's degree in coaching and leadership from Ohio University in 2013.