Jill Ellis has deep history in the U.S. women’s national team setup, and an even deeper one in the college ranks. She started her career as an assistant fast on the heels of the end of her playing days in 1988, and she won her first head coaching gig in the national team system with the U21s in 2000. Ever since, Ellis has been a fast-rising candidate for the full senior team head coaching gig, which she assumed for the first time without an interim tag on Friday.
What follows is a blow-by-blow look at Ellis’ head coaching career based on the fruits her various stops produced: top players, wins and accomplishments. Ellis’ first game as the full-time women’s coach is June 14 against France in Tampa, Florida.
College coaching career
Accomplishments: First ever Big Ten Tournament berth (1998)
Notable players coached: Lisa Baldwin, Emily Brown
Ellis’ tenure at Illinois was appropriately short for a sought-after coach earmarked for big things. She hardly lit the world on fire with the unheralded Illini, but in her second of two seasons she led them into the Big Ten Tournament for the first time in program history. She polished her Illinois career with a first-round exit in the league tourney, but she helped set the table for a quality Big Ten side that hadn’t had much to cheer about.