Bethann Shapiro Ord introduced as Binghamton University’s new women’s basketball head coach
Chemistry is right for former Weber State head coach to lead the Binghamton Bearcats
There was a lot of talk about the value of family and chemistry at the news conference introducing Binghamton University’s new women’s basketball head coach – Bethann Shapiro Ord – but the eggplant parmesan from Little Venice stole the show.
Both Shapiro Ord and Director of Athletics Patrick Elliot joked about how the food at Little Venice helped in recruiting Shapiro Ord to Binghamton.
When Elliot learned that there weren’t many restaurants in her town that she and her husband like to frequent, “I thought to myself: Advantage Binghamton!” said Elliott. “Her recruiting trip to Little Venice where she ordered the eggplant parmesan and said it was ALMOST as good as her mom’s did it, so most of the credit goes to the eggplant parmesan at Little Venice.”
Shapiro Ord was serious, however, when she spoke about her excitement in coming to Binghamton and the first phone call she had about the position with Elliott. “The moment I spoke to [Pat] I knew that it was a special place and when I took this position knew I would be coming into a place where I would have the support and encouragement to win championships, but to focus on the accomplishments of our student athletes,” she said.
Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger spoke about the search to fill the head coaching position, noting that Shapiro Ord’s name was at the top of the list. “When I read her résumé, I said, ‘Did you live in an RV for the last 20 years?’ and then I saw how many years she was at each institution and the sizeable, significant experiences she’s had. To have those kinds of experiences and to bring those with her to Binghamton – this is the right person at the right time.”
The key for him during the search, Stenger said, was when Shapiro Ord asked him what he would expect from her as a coach. His response: “The same from you as I expect from everyone at Binghamton University; that you will make our students successful for the rest of their lives.” (He “really wants to win” as well!)
Shapiro Ord “has demonstrated quality leadership at every step of her career and cares deeply about her athletes and everyone she deals with,” Elliott said. “She has a tremendous work ethic and has demonstrated that by instilling in those around her values and a commitment to excellence every step of the way.”
Shapiro Ord thanked everyone in the room for an amazing day and fantastic honor, including Stenger, Elliott and her many family members who were present. “I’m grateful to serve you and this amazing institution,” she said, as she praised her parents – who were both coaches – for their sacrifices. “There was a lot of time away, but we were always part of a team, all family. That’s what I do. My family is everything. You will see them a lot.”
When asked about what fans can expect from the women’s basketball program, Shapiro Ord was enthusiastic. “You’re going to enjoy the basketball here. I love up tempo and I love to score points,” she said. “The biggest thing is chemistry and getting the team together. Chemistry, family, team first. My players are going to know it’s about family.”
Shapiro Ord expects the America East to be very competitive, but fun to play in, and has high expectations for herself and her teams.
“We’re going to get better every day,” she said. “It’s team first and we’ll see how every day goes, but I really, really like to win. You always want to lead at the top of the league and make history and leave a footprint, and that’s what I want to do, but it’s just one day at a time. If we keep bringing in high-character kids, we’ll make it.
“I want graduations and cutting down nets.”