Franklin Pierce Athletic Director Rachel Burleson announced Friday that former women’s basketball Coach Mark Swasey will be returning to take the reins for the Ravens.
Swasey takes over for Jen McKillop, who was already an Assistant Athletic Director and the department’s Senior Woman Administrator. She will remain with Franklin Pierce as an Associate Athletic Director for Compliance, as well as the Senior Woman Administrator.
“I am grateful to coach McKillop for the leadership she provided our women’s basketball program over the previous three seasons, and am ecstatic to keep her on board as a member of our administrative team,” said Burleson. “In addition, I am excited to welcome coach Swasey back to Rindge and look forward to watching him guide our program moving forward.”
Swasey previously coached the Ravens from 2002-03 through the 2008-09 season and posted a 124-85 record (.593 winning percentage) over seven seasons. His tenure was highlighted by back-to-back NCAA Regional titles in 2008 and 2009, with the 2009 squad also capturing a Northeast-10 Conference title and finishing as the national runner-up. Swasey was the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s National Coach of the Year for Division II in 2008-09, in addition to earning East Region and NE10 Coach of the Year accolades as well. His 124 victories rank second all-time in program annals.
Following his first stint at Franklin Pierce, Swasey put together a 50-19 record (.725) over two-plus seasons at California University of Pennsylvania, a tenure which included appearances in the NCAA Championship in both 2010 and 2011. Adding in a 56-26 record (.683) over three seasons at Division III Norwich University to open his head coaching career, Swasey owns a 230-130 (.639) over 360 games as a collegiate head coach.
The Ravens women’s basketball team has struggled of late, managing just four wins or less in each of the past three seasons while going a collective 11-67 in that span, including 3-60 in conference play.
“It feels great to be a part of the Franklin Pierce University community again; President (Kim) Mooney and Athletic Director Burleson have done an amazing job in progressing the university forward, and this is an exciting time to be a part of its growth,” said Swasey. “I wish Coach McKillop the best of luck in her career shift to administration and I am blessed to be taking over a program that has all the building blocks for success in place. Coach McKillop has done a great job recruiting excellent players who, more importantly, excel in and out of the classroom as students and young adults. The culture of the program is in excellent health and I can’t wait to get in there and start working with them to compete in the NE10.”