Geneseo coach gets call to move up

More news about: SUNY Geneseo
Scott Hemer, chatting with an officials
SUNY Geneseo athletics photo

SUNY Geneseo women's basketball coach Scott Hemer has been named the head coach at NCAA Division I Canisius in Buffalo, N.Y. He becomes the second Division III head coach to do so this offseason, following FDU-Florham coach Marc Mitchell, who has been hired at St. Peter's.

Hemer replaces Terry Zeh, who led the Griffs for 14 seasons and guided the Blue and Gold to the program's two NCAA Division I postseason appearances. Canisius went 10-20 this past season.

"It is an honor to be selected as the next women's basketball coach at Canisius and I am humbled and excited by the opportunity I have been presented," Hemer said. "I would like to thank President John J. Hurley and Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Terri Mangione for their efforts and I look forward to working with them in the future. I would also like to express my gratitude to (athletic director) Bill Maher and his staff for putting their faith in me to lead the program.

"My time at Geneseo will always hold a special place in my heart and it is with mixed emotions that I say goodbye," said Hemer. "From the administration and my colleagues to all the supporters of the program, everyone I have come to know as friends are a significant part of what makes this college community so unique. I also want to thank my players and assistant coaches, both past and present. You are what made this opportunity possible, and I am greatly appreciative. Words cannot express how fortunate I feel knowing that all the memories we shared helped create a true family experience that can never be taken from us. I will forever be indebted to you for sharing that time with me." 

The winningest coach in program history, Hemer compiled a 218-89 record (.710) in 11 seasons with the Knights, including State University of New York Athletic Conference championships in 2011, 2015 and 2018. He also guided Geneseo to five Division III NCAA Tournament appearances, including its fourth straight this past winter.

The 2016 Pat Summit Trophy winner as the United States Marine Corps/WBCA Division III National Coach of the Year, Hemer also capped the 2018 campaign with his fifth SUNYAC Coach of the Year honor, including an unprecedented fourth in a row.

Hemer led the Knights to 20-wins in seven of the last eight seasons, including NCAA Division III Tournament Sweet 16 appearances in 2015 and 2017. The 2016-17 squad started with a 26-0 record that included the second undefeated regular season in program history as well as an 18-0 SUNYAC mark en route to a school-record 28-2 final record. Hemer also directed Geneseo to an undefeated 18-0 SUNYAC record this past winter as the Knights are unbeaten in their previous 40 regular-season conference outings.

Under Hemer's leadership, Geneseo received back-to-back Russell "Together We R Team" Awards in 2016 and 2017 from the WBCA, in recognition of persevering through the death of a teammate during both seasons. 

"It has been a pleasure to work with Coach Hemer and see first-hand the development of the women's basketball program," said Geneseo athletic director Mike Mooney. "Over his career at Geneseo he has moved the women's program into the national Division III conversation. He possesses the ability to provide his players with the opportunity to reach their full potential both as student-athletes and individuals. Scott's work as a colleague is greatly appreciated and we wish him the best as he moves to the Division I arena."


From D-III to D-I

The list of coaches to go directly from D-III to D-I head coaching jobs since 2000 is relatively short. Click on the links to see stories on each coach's jump.

Coach, D-III school D-I school Year Best year there Current job
Lisa Stone, UW-Eau Claire Drake 2000-01 25-8, 2001-02 D-I St. Louis (26-8 in 15-16)
Candace Crabtree, Rowan Drexel 2000-01 19-10, 2000-01 Out of coaching
Richard Barron, Sewanee Princeton  2000-01 21-7, 2005-06 Maine men's head coach
Tammy Smith, Muhlenberg Lafayette 2001-02 14-16, 2007-08 Out of coaching
Julie Goodenough, Hardin-Simmons Oklahoma St. 2002-03 8-20, 2003-04 D-I Abilene Christian (26-4 in 15-16)
Mary Hegarty, Chapman Long Beach St. 2003-04 19-9, 2004-05 Out of coaching
Kristin Hughes, Case Colgate 2004-05 12-18, 2004-05 Out of coaching
Stefanie Pemper, Bowdoin Navy 2008-09 25-8, 2017-18 Navy
Scott Rueck, George Fox Oregon St. 2010-11 31-4, 2016-17 Oregon State
Aaron Roussell, Chicago Bucknell 2012-13 27-6, 2016-17 Bucknell
Greg Todd, Transylvania Morehead St. 2013-14 21-10, 2016-17 Morehead State
Nancy Fahey, Washington U. Illinois 2016-17 9-22, 2017-18 Illinois
Loree Payne, Puget Sound Northern Arizona 2016-17 7-23, 2017-18 Northern Arizona
Marc Mitchell, FDU-Florham St. Peter's 2017-18    
Scott Hemer, SUNY Geneseo Canisius 2017-18