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Detroit Mercy women's hoops hires former EMU head coach AnnMarie Gilbert

Tony Paul
The Detroit News

Detroit — AnnMarie Gilbert is coming back to Michigan.

Detroit Mercy has named Gilbert its next women's basketball head coach, the school announced Friday. She was the head coach at Eastern Michigan from 2007-12, with a 94-64 record and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2012, and was an assistant at Michigan State the five seasons before that.

AnnMarie Gilbert

Gilbert left Eastern Michigan after the 2012 season. In 2010, she was cited for four major NCAA violations, mostly regarding too many practice hours. It led to a one-month suspension.

“I am humbled and honored to return to Michigan to become the new head women’s basketball coach at the University of Detroit Mercy,” Gilbert said in a statement from the school.

“Michigan is a recruiting gold mine rich with talent. I am excited to connect with the players, alumni, fans, local high school and AAU programs. I look forward to building a winning culture, instilling a spirit of excellence and restoring pride in Titan women’s basketball.”

At Detroit Mercy, she replaces Bernard Scott, who was let go in mid-March after five seasons. He had a record of 42-109, with just nine wins over the last three seasons.

This is Gilbert's fourth head-coaching stop. She comes from Division II Virginia Union, where she's coached the last five seasons with a record of 135-18 and a trip to the 2017 national-championship game. The five years before that were at Eastern Michigan, with 69 wins over her last three years. She got her head-coaching start at Division III Oberlin in Ohio, where she coached eight years.

When Suzy Merchant left Eastern Michigan to become head coach at Michigan State in 2017, Gilbert departed Michigan State to succeed her at EMU.

She arrives at Detroit Mercy having posted eight consecutive 20-win-or-better seasons. In 18 seasons as a head coach, she has a record of 287-218.

“I hope to bring that same winning tradition to Detroit Mercy," said Gilbert, who starred in college at Ohio, leading the nation in scoring as a junior.

Gilbert will have serious work to do to get the Titans back to prominence, though they do return some talent from a very young team in 2019-20.

Detroit Mercy returns nine players, and five of them will be sophomores. The Titans lose only one starter. They signed two players in the fall, including Jaci Jones of Fort Wayne, Ind., and Maddie Puletti from Gilmour Academy in Ohio. Jones asked out of her letter of intent after Scott was let go and has since signed with Horizon League champion IUPUI. There's no word yet on Puletti, though she was a former teammate of Detroit Mercy's Annika Corcoran, last season's assist leader.

Financial and contract-length terms weren't released, per Detroit Mercy's status as a private institution.

Twitter: @tonypaul1984