Illini look to make it two straight wins over Vikings
Matt Bollant era begins on Sunday vs. Purple Aces
Senior ready to lead Illini back to prominence
Veteran coach called 'one of the top teachers of the game'
Matt Bollant era begins with 19 home games.
Mike Divilbiss begins his first season as an assistant coach at the University of Illinois. Divilbiss served four years as an assistant under Bollant at Green Bay after spending 21 years as a collegiate head coach in the Northwest.
"Our program just got way better," Bollant said. "I've been around women's basketball 15 years and I believe he's as good of a teacher of the game as there is in the entire country. He has great attention to detail. He sees the little things in practice. It is just a great progression of learning for the players."
"Matt and I feel like we equip each other very well," Divilbiss said. "Our gifts are completely opposite. We both agree, though, in recruiting great character. There are some great character kids here who want to win and want to learn. It takes time to develop the culture that we really believe will make us successful. When that is in place, winning takes care of itself. I feel really blessed to have the opportunity to coach at this level."
Divilbiss, who has named associate head coach at Green Bay in 2010, helped the Phoenix to a 122-13 record in his four years there, including a combined 65-4 in the past two seasons. He coached WNBA draft choice Julie Wojta at Green Bay.
Divilbiss spent seven years as the head coach at Idaho, helping the Vandals to the Big West Conference title game in 2004 and 2005 and earning Big West Coach of the Year honors in 2004. He coached the nation's leading scorer, Emily Faurholt, in 2004, Nancy Lieberman Award Finalist, Leilani Mitchell, in 2006 and three honorable mention All-Americans.
Prior to his stint at Idaho, Divilbiss served as head coach at Lewis & Clark State College for 14 seasons, guiding the Lady Warriors to six NAIA National Tournaments. Lewis & Clark reached the Elite Eight in 2000 and the NAIA Final Four in 2001, a year that also saw LCSC win 33 games.
Divilbiss has a 392-241 record as a head coach (.619), 310-122 at Lewis & Clark and 82-119 at Idaho.
A native of Dundee, Ill., Divilbiss graduated from Winona State University in 1981 receiving a bachelor's degree in physical education, and earned a master's degree in physical education from Eastern Washington University in 1987.
Divilbiss and his wife, Judy, have two children, Zachary and Chantel.