June 21, 2005
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame head women’s basketball coach Muffet McGraw announced Tuesday that Stephanie Menio has been named coordinator of basketball operations for the Irish. Menio (pronounced many-O) will oversee all aspects of marketing and promotions for the Notre Dame women’s basketball program, as well as serve as director of the Irish women’s basketball camps and assist in both film exchange and administrative duties related to Notre Dame’s nationally-ranked recruiting efforts. She replaces Heather Maxwell, who is set to begin doctoral work at the University of Minnesota this fall.
“Stephanie has a wonderful amount of energy and enthusiasm, which I believe our fans, players and staff are really going to enjoy,” McGraw said. “I can’t say enough about the job Heather Maxwell has done with our program during the past five years. She has given every ounce of herself to this program and she will be missed. At the same time, I’m confident Stephanie will pick up right where Heather has left off and continue to help make this program one of the country’s top attractions on and off the court.”
“I am very excited to have the opportunity to work with Coach McGraw, the staff, players and especially the outstanding and loyal fans of Notre Dame women’s basketball,” Menio said. “From the minute I stepped on campus, I felt the passion and excitement surrounding the Irish women’s basketball program. Heather (Maxwell) has done a tremendous job marketing the Irish for the past five seasons and I plan on building on her success by consistently ranking in the top 10 in national attendance.”
Menio spent the past year as a marketing associate in the athletics department at the University of Missouri, where she focused on marketing and promotions for the Tiger women’s basketball, volleyball, softball and gymnastics programs, as well assisting with group ticket sales and game management for football and men’s basketball. Thanks to her efforts in 2004-05, the Missouri volleyball team was ranked 19th in the nation in attendance, the gymnastics team wound up 15th in the country in attendance (a 30-percent increase), the Tiger women’s basketball program saw a 20-percent increase in season ticket sales and a 21-percent increase in attendance, and the Missouri softball team recorded the seven largest crowds in the program’s history, increasing attendance by 30 percent.
Prior to arriving at Missouri, Menio spent two years as a marketing assistant with the women’s basketball program at the University of Pittsburgh. In conjunction with the debut of the new Petersen Events Center, Menio aided in the Panthers’ 114-percent rise in attendance from 2002-04, including the first women’s basketball sellout in school history (12,632 vs. Connecticut on Jan. 25, 2003). A native of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Menio graduated from Pittsburgh in 2004 with a bachelor of science degree in business administration.
Menio will join a Notre Dame program that has been ranked among the top 20 in the nation in attendance in each of the past five years, including a No. 16 ranking in 2004-05 (5,830 fans per game). The Irish also have attracted 19 of 20 largest women’s basketball crowds in school history since 2000-01, highlighted by the program’s first two sellouts, 12 audiences at least of 8,000 fans, and attendance figures of 5,000 or better at 65 of the past 67 home games.
The Irish registered a 27-6 mark in 2004-05 (matching the third-highest win total in school history), and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament before winding up 11th in the final Associated Press poll and 15th in the year-end ESPN/USA Today coaches’ poll. Coming off its 12th consecutive 20-win season and 10th straight NCAA Tournament berth, Notre Dame will have eight returning monogram winners next season, along with two talented incoming freshmen — guard Lindsay Schrader (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett HS) and forward Chandrica Smith (Stone Mountain, Ga./Oak Hill Academy (Va.)) — who comprise the nation’s 16th-rated recruiting class, according to Blue Star Index.
— ND —