Michele Durand begins her 18th season as the head coach of the Ohio Northern women’s basketball program. She is also in her third year as the Senior Woman Administrator.
Last season, ONU finished the 2017-18 campaign with a 23-5 overall record and a 15-3 OAC mark to capture the school's fifth OAC Regular Season title in six seasons and their fourth successive crown. Northern would go on to compete in the their 23rd consecutive OAC Tournament in program history where they would fall to Marietta in the championship game. The Polar Bears would also rank as high as No. 7 in the nation with the release of the D3Hoops.com preseason polls. During the campaign, Northern reeled off an impressive 17-game winning streak and also captured their seventh successive 20-or-more win season.
On November 18, 2017, Durand became the all-time winningest coach in program history after Ohio Northern defeated St. Mary's (Ind.) 84-48 in the North Park (Ill.) Invitational. She surpassed former Hall of Fame coach Gayle Lauth, who racked up 275 career victories, for the top spot.
In 2016-17, Durand guided the Polar Bears to their first undefeated regular season in program history. The Polar Bears ended the season at 30-1 (18-0 in the OAC). They not only won the OAC regular season title but went on to claim the OAC Tournament title as well. For her efforts Durand was named the Ohio Athletic Conference “Coach of the Year” for the fourth time in her career.
During the 2016-17 season Durand led the Polar Bears to their ninth NCAA Division III Tournament appearance and fourth trip in five years. Ohio Northern was rewarded for their undefeated regular season, earning hosting rights for the first four rounds of the tournament where they finished their season in the Elite Eight. Ohio Northern concluded the season ranked fifth in the country with the final poll release. Durand was named the Great Lakes Region “Coach of the Year," her third time receiving the honor in her career.
Looking further into Durand’s career, she led the Polar Bears to a 27-2 record and to OAC Regular Season and OAC Tournament titles during the 2012-13 campaign. The team ascended to as high as No. 3 in the national rankings and appeared in the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time since the 1988-89 season.
On Mar. 2 2013, she won her 300th career game against Hanover (Ind.) in an NCAA Division III Tournament First-Round contest. Just one year later, she obtained her 200th win as a Polar Bear on Feb. 22, 2014 with a 75-73 overtime win over OAC rival Capital. Currently, Durand owns 419 career coaching victories from her time with the Ohio Northern and Bluffton women's basketball programs.
During her tenure at Ohio Northern, Durand has coached four WBCA All-Americans (one First-Team and three Honorable Mention), one First Team Academic All-American, two D3Hoops.com All-Americans (Second-Team and Fourth-Team), three OAC Players of the Year, and 12 First-Team All-OAC players.
Under her guidance, the Polar Bears have won five OAC Regular Season titles, two OAC Tournament titles, and have appeared in four NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Tournaments.
The Toledo native came to Ohio Northern after 11 seasons as head coach at nearby Bluffton College (now named Bluffton University). While at Bluffton, she was named “Coach of the Year” in the Western Buckeye Collegiate Conference following the 1990-91 season and in the Association of Mideast Colleges during the 1995-96 campaign.
Durand served in other capacities during her time at Bluffton as she also coached the women’s tennis and cross country teams, served as the associate director of athletics, and was an assistant professor of HPER during her tenure.
For her efforts on the sidelines as a former Bluffton student-athlete, Durand was inducted into the Bluffton University Athletic Hall of Fame in the fall of 2018. She has also been inducted into the Toledo Whitmer High School Athletic Hall of Fame for her accomplishments in basketball, cross country, and track during her prep days.
She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation from Bluffton in 1988 and received a Master’s Degree from Bowling Green State University in Physical Education in 1990.
Durand is a member of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and serves on the Great Lakes Region NCAA Tournament selection committee. She resides in Findlay.
Women's Basketball under Durand
|2017-18||23-5||.821||15-3 / 1st||.833||Runner Up|
|2016-17||30-1||.970||18-0 / 1st||1.000||Champions|
|2015-16||23-5||.821||17-1 / 1st||.944||Semifinalist|
|2014-15||20-6||.769||16-2 / 1st||.889||Semifinalist|
|2013-14||23-6||.793||14-4 / 3rd||.778||Runner Up|
|2012-13||27-2||.931||18-0 / 1st||1.000||Champions|
|2011-12||21-6||.778||14-4 / 2nd||.778||Runner Up|
|2010-11||17-10||.629||11-7 / 3rd||.611||Semifinalist|
|2009-10||16-11||.592||10-8 / 5th||.556||Semifinalist|
|2008-09||9-17||.346||7-11 / 8th||.389||Quarterfinalist|
|2007-08||19-7||.731||14-4 / 2nd||.778||Quarterfinalist|
|2006-07||17-10||.630||11-7 / 4th||.611||Semifinalist|
|2005-06||12-14||.462||7-11 / 7th||.389||Quarterfinalist|
|2004-05||11-15||.333||6-12 / t7th||.333||Quarterfinalist|
|2003-04||14-13||.519||8-10 / t5th||.444||Quarterfinalist|
|2002-03||7-19||.269||3-15 / t9th||.167||Quarterfinalist|
|2001-02||9-16||.360||8-10 / t5th||.444||Quarterfinalist|