Glenn Putyrae Returns As Women's Rowing Coach

New women's rowing head coach Glenn Putyrae.
New women's rowing head coach Glenn Putyrae.

June 7, 2011

SPOKANE, Wash. – A familiar face is returning to the Gonzaga University athletic department. Bulldog athletic director Mike Roth announced the hiring of Glenn Putyrae as the women’s rowing head coach Tuesday. Putyrae was the Zag head coach from 1999-2007 and had been on the staff since 1997. Putyrae returns to Spokane after a four-year stint as the women’s rowing head coach at Georgetown University.

“I am grateful for the opportunity I had to coach at Georgetown but I am excited to come back and excited at the opportunity to be the coach at Gonzaga again,” stated Putyrae. “I feel like there are certain places that you can be successful at and after experiencing the east coast I came to the conclusion that the west is best for me. I still have family and friends out west and I am looking forward to rekindling those relationships.

“I can’t thank the Gonzaga administration enough, most importantly Mike Roth and Chris Standiford, for giving me the opportunity to assume responsibility for such a successful program. I know there is a whole new group of student-athletes and a new set of challenges that lie ahead but I can’t wait to hit the ground running.”

In his four years with the Hoyas, Putyrae led the team to a second place finish (2010), third place finish (2011), and two fourth places finishes (2008, 2009) at the BIG EAST Championships. Under his direction as head coach of the program the lightweight squad experienced success as well. The lightweight Varsity 8+ crew secured a spot in the Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships all four years. The Hoyas finished second at the 2008 IRA’s, 5th at the 2009 IRA’s and sixth at both the 2010 and 2011 National Championships.

He coached four Pocock Lightweight All-Americans, 16 Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) Scholar Athletes and 10 BIG EAST All-Conference honorees. In 2008 and 2009, the Hoyas earned the BIG EAST Academic Team Excellence Award and in 2009 Putyrae and his coaching staff were named BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year.

Putyrae returns to the Gonzaga program he turned into the powerhouse of the West Coast Conference. In his eight years at the helm, he led Gonzaga to seven West Coast Conference Championships and three appearances in the ECAC Rowing International resulting in a 2003 national championship.

“I couldn’t be more excited for Glenn to return to Gonzaga,” stated Roth. “He did a terrific job when he was here from 1997-2007 and I am looking forward to him taking the program to new heights in his return.”

Putyrae was named women’s interim head coach at Gonzaga during the summer of 1999 and had the interim removed from his title during the summer of 2000. In his first season coaching the Gonzaga varsity women, Putyrae led the Zags to their fourth straight West Coast Conference rowing crown and was named Co-Coach of the Year. Putyrae again earned WCC Coach of the Year honors in 2001 as his team won its fifth straight WCC rowing championship. The varsity crew also went on to finish third at the Avaya National Rowing Championships in Gainesville, Ga.

In 2002, Putyrae was again named the WCC Coach of the Year. He was also named Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association (WIRA) Coach of the Year as his team finished first at the WIRA Championships. The Bulldogs continued to make a splash on the national scene in 2003 winning their seventh WCC title and finishing second at the WIRA Championships. Gonzaga would cap the season by finishing first at the ECAC National Invitational and being named the Northwest Region Crew Coach of the Year.

In 2004, Gonzaga showed the depth of its rowing program as the Bulldogs won their eighth straight WCC crown edging Loyola Marymount University by one point for the title. Gonzaga continued its dominance of the WCC in 2005as the Bulldogs wept their ninth conference championships and going on to win the WIRA team efficiency trophy with first place finishes in the Varsity 8+, Junior Varsity 8+ and Novice 4+. Putyrae was named the WIRA Coach of the Year.

After having their unprecedented nine-straight WCC titles snapped in 2006, Putyrae and the Bulldogs rebounded with their 10th WCC crown in 2007 and Putyrae earning another WCC Coach of the year honor.

Prior to being promoted to the women's coaching position, Putyrae served as the Gonzaga freshman crew coach from 1997 through 1999. During his coaching tenure the Bulldogs freshman crew team vaulted onto both the West Coast and national rowing scene. In his first season of coaching at Gonzaga, the Freshman 8+ claimed a sixth place finish at the Pacific Coast Rowing Championships, but it was his 1998 freshman squad that garnered the greatest accomplishment. Gonzaga's Freshman 4+ squad grabbed a third-place finish at the IRA Championship Regatta.

An avid rower since his high school days at Saint Ignatius Prep School in San Francisco, Putyrae was a varsity letterwinner at national power University of Washington, rowing for the Huskies from 1989-93. While completing his Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington in 1994, Putyrae entered the coaching profession as a graduate assistant coach with the Huskies. Following a season in which Washington’s crew team went undefeated; Putyrae used that experience to land his first head coaching position at Pacific-10 Conference rival Washington State University.

Putyrae started his first head coaching position as the Cougar freshman men’s coach, a position he would hold until 1997.

In 1997 Putyrae completed his masters of education degree and also moved on to become an assistant coach at Gonzaga University.



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