Urbana University Athletic Director Doug Young announced the hiring of Danny Wingate (pictured) as the new Blue Knight head women’s basketball coach Tuesday.
“We are excited to bring Danny’s leadership into our women’s basketball program,” said Young upon the announcement. “He brings a wealth of experience, and he has proven over time that he has the ability to win at the collegiate level. We see nothing but great things for the future of our women’s basketball program under Danny’s leadership.”
“I am extremely excited to join the Urbana University family,” added Wingate. “My relationship with UU goes back to my playing days at Malone (College) University. I am very familiar with the University and the surrounding Urbana community and I am excited to get started. Furthermore, I am thrilled about the current culture of the team. I have met with them several times, and I am eager to start working with them.”
Wingate played one season of Division I basketball at the University of Tennessee-Martin. After that, the Wooster, Ohio native played three seasons at Malone, where he earned All-American status on the court. Wingate graduated from Malone in 1997 with a degree in communications and public relations. He appeared in Sports Illustrated in 1995 after scoring 53 points in a game against Wilberforce, still a school record. Despite playing just three seasons for the Pioneers, Wingate ended his career as one of Malone’s Top 20 all-time scorers with 1,237 career points.
After graduating from Malone, Wingate earned his Master’s Degree in Higher Education at Geneva College. Later, Wingate served as an assistant women’s basketball coach for Judson University in Elgin, Illinois for two years. His first head coaching position came at Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois, where he coached the women’s basketball program for three seasons.
In 2003, he took the head women’s basketball job at Missouri Baptist University. Missouri Baptist is a private, NAIA school from the American Midwest Conference in suburban St. Louis. During Wingate’s 8 seasons at the helm, the team claimed its first ever conference title and made its program debut in the NAIA’s National Tournament.
Over his collegiate coaching career, Wingate has coached 5 All-Americans, and three of his players have gone on to play professionally overseas.
Most recently, Wingate had returned to his home state to become the athletic director and head boys’ basketball coach at nearby Emmanuel Christian Academy. Wingate will vacate his post at Emmanuel Christian to take the new position at Urbana University.
“I cannot say enough about the school I am coming from, Emmanuel Christian Academy,” added Wingate. “Dr. Dan Bragg (ECA Superintendent) gave me the opportunity to lead an athletic department, and I am blessed to have served under his leadership. ECA is a fine institution and I am privileged to have had the opportunity to work alongside such great people!”
Next season will be Wingate’s 12th as a collegiate head women’s basketball coach. The Blue Knight women’s basketball team is coming off a conference championship, the first in the last 15 years for the program. This September, Urbana University enters the newly formed, 12-team Mountain East Conference.