Chuck Winkelman is the new women’s basketball coach at Calvin College, becoming the college’s seventh head coach since women’s basketball became an MIAA sport for the 1978-79 academic year.
He takes over for John Ross who stepped down from the position in March 2016 to focus on his duties as Calvin’s men’s tennis coach and as an associate professor in Calvin’s Kinesiology Department.
“We are thrilled and excited to announce Chuck Winkelman as our head women’s basketball coach,” said Calvin co-director of athletics Dr. Nancy Meyer. “We feel blessed to have someone with his proven experience and credentials come aboard. We have had 13 wonderful years with John Ross as our head coach and I have no doubt that Chuck Winkelman will continue the outstanding tradition of Calvin women’s basketball as our new head coach.”
Calvin co-director of athletics Dr. Jim Timmer echoed the thoughts of Meyer.
“We can’t wait for Chuck Winkelman to get started and we are eagerly looking forward to the upcoming season and the years ahead,” said Timmer. “One of the things that stood out to us with Chuck during the interview process was his ability to integrate his Christian faith into his role as a head coach. He will be a strong servant-leader with our women’s basketball program and an terrific addition to our athletic department.”
Winkelman comes to Calvin after spending the previous six years as head women’s basketball coach at Millsaps College in Mississippi. At Calvin he takes over a program that has captured 15 MIAA regular season championships, earned 17 trips to the NCAA III Tournament and advanced to the national quarterfinals of the NCAA III Tournament four times. Calvin’s 2015-16 team posted an overall record of 20-6 and finished second in the MIAA regular season standings with a 14-2 conference mark.
“One of the things that drew me to Calvin is that the school is an intentionally Christian college that places a high value on academic excellence,” said Winkelman. “From an athletics standpoint, I think that Calvin is a place where we can pursue the ultimate prize in competing for national championships in women’s basketball. It’s a place that is close to my Midwest roots and upbringing, a culture that I am very comfortable with. My family and I are embracing this new adventure together. We are looking forward to becoming part of the Calvin community and the greater Grand Rapids community in the days ahead.”
A native of St. Cloud, Minnesota, Winkelman brings 15 years of head collegiate basketball coaching experience with him to Calvin with a combined career won-loss record of 278-119 for a winning percentage of .700.
Winkelman began his collegiate coaching career at Division III Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. In nine years at Hendrix, Winkelman compiled a won-loss record of 168-66 that included three Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference titles and three appearances in the NCAA III Tournament. He was named the Division III South Region Coach of the Year in 1997. He then spent four years teaching and coaching at Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, Arkansas, and followed with two years as a teacher and coach at Little Rock Christian Academy.
He returned to collegiate coaching in May of 2010 when he was hired as the head women’s basketball coach at Millsaps College. In six years at Millsaps, he compiled a won-loss record of 110-53 that included three Southern Athletic Association regular season titles. In his first year at Millsaps, he led the Majors to a 12-13 record, one year after the school had posted a 1-24 mark. For his efforts, he was named the 2011 co-Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year along with DePauw University head coach Kris Huffman. The award came prior to DePauw leaving the SCAC and the league’s renaming to the SAA. In 2012, he was named the D3hoops.com South Region Coach of the Year after leading Millsaps to a 22-6 record and an appearance in the SAA Tournament Championship game. In 2015, he was named the Southern Athletic Association Coach of the Year.
Collectively as a head women’s basketball coach at Hendrix and Millsaps, Winkelman has coached three Division III All-Americans.
Winkelman received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Kinesiology from Hamline University (St. Paul, MN) and later received a Master of Science degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Sports Administration from the University of North Texas (Denton, TX). At Hamline, Winkelman was a varsity letterwinner in football and was a member of the men’s varsity basketball program in different capacities as a student-athlete and student-coach.
During the summer of 2015, Winkelman attended the Center for Coaching Excellence (by invitation only), an initiative supported by the WBCA and the NCAA, along with 35 other Head Coaches from around the country serving at all levels of college basketball. Winkelman is also an Impact Player Development Specialist, completing the necessary courses of study during the summer of 2015.
Winkelman and his wife Denise have three daughters, Callie, Addie, and Millie.Calvin Head Coach