MSU v Southern Utah Women's Hoops (copy)

Montana State head coach Tricia Binford talks to her team during a game against Southern Utah on Jan. 4 at Worthington Arena.

Support Local Journalism


Subscribe


Montana State head coach Tricia Binford has signed a three-year contract renewal to remain at the helm of the Bobcat program, MSU athletic director Leon Costello announced Wednesday.

“The Montana State women’s basketball program has achieved milestones on the court and in the classroom under head coach Tricia Binford,” Costello said in a program news release. “She is a great recruiter, teacher and mentor and I am excited for the future and continued growth of our women’s basketball program under her leadership.”

Binford’s new contract will go into effect July 1, 2020 and last through April 30, 2023. Her base salary is set to be $165,000.

The Bobcats have not had a losing season since 2007-08. They’re averaging 19.5 wins in the last four years, including back-to-back 20-win campaigns in 2015-16 and 2016-17. The 2016 Bobcats reached the WNIT where they faced Utah, while the 2017 team won the Big Sky tournament for the first time since 1993 and played in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Washington. Both squads won regular season Big Sky titles.

In Binford’s 15th season as head coach, the Bobcats are 9-6 and sit atop the Big Sky standings with a 5-1 record. MSU was the preseason favorite to win the league in both the coaches and media polls.

MSU v Idaho Women's Basketball (copy)

MSU’s Oliana Squires and Fallyn Freije take a photo with head coach Tricia Binford to celebrate each reaching 1,000 career points prior to a game against Idaho on Jan. 9 at Worthington Arena.

“My family and I are so blessed and thankful to be part of such a special place as Montana State University, Bozeman and the state of Montana,” Binford said in a program news release. “The support of the community, the inspirational leadership of President (Waded) Cruzado and the energetic and enthusiastic guidance of Leon Costello is second to none. I’m overwhelmed by the support shown to our program and the investment in our student-athletes.

“I also get to work alongside the very best staff on a daily basis,” Binford added. “They challenge me to be better. And, finally, to all the players that I’ve been privileged to coach, you truly inspire me every day with your work ethic and commitment to the program. We still have a lot to accomplish and I am as motivated today as the first day I took the job.”

Binford will earn a $5,000 bonus each year if season ticket sales increase by 300 in Year 1 of the contract, 350 in Year 2 and 400 in Year 3. She will also receive a $2,500 bonus each semester the team grade-point average is 3.45 or higher and a $5,000 each academic year the team hits that mark. $10,000 will be received each year the team earns an academic progress rate of 985. A $7,500 incentive is included if Binford wins Big Sky Conference coach of the year.

The contract is similar to the contract of Montana State’s men’s basketball head coach Danny Sprinkle, who was hired in April and is in his first season as a head coach at the Division I level. Sprinkle is making $164,000. Sprinkle receives a $2,500 bonus each semester the men’s basketball team earns a GPA of 2.80 or higher. Sprinkle earns a $10,000 if the Bobcats reach the NCAA Tournament while Binford is set to earn $5,000 if her team makes the NCAA Tournament.

Binford is the all-time winningest women’s basketball coach in Montana State history with 237 victories. She is currently the second longest tenured head coach in the 11-member Big Sky Conference where she has registered 143 wins. Only Eastern Washington’s Wendy Schuller, currently in her 19th season, has been in the league longer.

Binford’s 143 conference wins makes her the fourth winningest coach in Big Sky history behind Montana’s Robin Selvig (359), Weber State’s Carla Taylor (180) and Schuller (159).

In her 15 years at MSU, Binford has produced two Big Sky MVPs in Jasmine Hommes and Peyton Ferris, two Big Sky defensive players of the year and 25 all-conference performers. Katie Bussey was named an honorable mention All-American in 2012. The Bobcats have boasted three Big Sky newcomers of the year, one conference freshman of the year and two Big Sky top reserves of the year in that span, as well as 97 Big Sky Conference All-Academic honorees and a two-time academic All-American.

Support Local Journalism

To see what else is happening in Gallatin County subscribe to the online paper.

Paul Schwedelson can be reached at pschwedelson@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2670. Follow him on Twitter @pschweds.