Sharp retires from Concordia-Austin

Women's Basketball Hall of Fame member and Concordia-Austin Head Coach Linda Sharp resigned, finishing a career that spanned four decades and included two Division I national championships.

“This has definitely been a difficult and long decision process for me” Sharp said. “As I look back on my 40 year coaching career I have enjoyed all the players, coaching staffs, administrations and fans, but it is time for me to spend time with my family and friends.”

Sharp went 87 — 87 in seven seasons with the Tornados but had a career record of 496-271 in 27 years. She coached the University of Southern California from 1976-1989, where she achieved a 271-99 record and led her teams to four NCAA Final Four appearances, including back-to-back National Championships in 1983 and 1984. Sharp coached some star-studded teams during her time at USC including such players as Cheryl Miller and Cynthia Cooper.

After leaving USC Coach Sharp coached at Southwest Texas State University (now known as Texas State) from 1989-1997 where she won 138 games and lost 85 in eight seasons. She coached the Los Angeles Sparks in 1997, the WNBA's inaugural year. Sharp then assisted her former pupil Cheryl Miller with the Phoenix Mercury in 2000. Coach Sharp became the Head Coach of the Phoenix Mercury during the remainder of the 2002 season after Cynthia Cooper resigned the position.

Amy Carlton, American Southwest Conference Commissioner, said “the membership of the American Southwest Conference has been privileged over the last seven seasons to have been associated with Hall of Fame coach Linda Sharp. Throughout her career, Coach Sharp has been a leader and advocate for women's basketball on the collegiate and professional levels.”

A search for her replacement will begin immediately.