|Title:||Asst. AD - Compliance / Head Basketball Coach|
Now in her 21st season at Whitworth University, Helen Higgs is the winningest and longest serving women's basketball coach in school history. Not only does she have a record of 305-207 heading into the 2014-15 season, the most wins in school history, her winning percentage of .596 is also the best all-time among Pirate women's basketball coaches. Since becoming members of the NCAA in 1999, Higgs put together the best stretch of records in school history. Whitworth went 124-53 (.700) in the seven seasons from 1999-2005.
The 2013-14 season was a season of
milestones. Higgs became the first Northwest Conference women's
basketball coach to reach 300 wins with an 89-56 win at Pacific
Lutheran on February 8, 2014. The Whitworth women earned the
programs first win over a top-ranked opponent as the Pirates
defeated No. 1 Whitman, 68-65, to repeat as the NWC Tournament
champions. One week later, Whitworth claimed its first NCAA
Tournament win with a 71-51 win over George Fox.
In 2002-03 Higgs led the Pirates to a Northwest Conference title and an overall record of 19-7. A win over eventual NCAA Division III finalist Eastern Connecticut State was included in the victory total. The 2003-04 team was 19-6, while in 2004-05 Higgs directed the Bucs to a 22-3 record, the best single season mark ever at Whitworth. Whitworth returned to the Northwest Conference tournament in 2009-10 after a three-year absence. The Pirates earned back-to-back Northwest Conference automatic bids to the NCAA tournament in 2012-13 and 2013-14.
Higgs' teams have consistently battled for conference playoff appearances, have won two conference championships and three conference tournaments, placed in the sweet sixteen at the NAIA Division II national championships and advanced to the NCAA Tournament three times. Higgs has been named Northwest Conference Coach of the Year three times.
As a player at the University of Oregon, Higgs started for three years and led the team to a top-ten national ranking. Higgs continued her playing career in Europe, where she helped lead Turnverein Bensburg to an undefeated season and a place in the German Cup finals. As a high school player, Higgs led East Anchorage High School to a state championship in 1980.
Higgs began her coaching career while completing her playing career in Germany. She coached the second-division women's team and the 18-under team in Turnverein Bensburg,
After leaving Germany, Higgs was an assistant coach at Gonzaga University for two years. While she was there, the Bulldogs won the school's first WCC championship in women's basketball.
In 1990, Higgs moved from Gonzaga to perennial national power University of Utah. While Higgs was an assistant with the Utes, Utah was selected to play in the NCAA Tournament twice and played for the WAC championship four times.
At Whitworth, Higgs also serves as Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance and Eligibility.