Steve Donahue is in his third season as the head basketball coach at Boston College. He assumed the position on April 7, 2010 after serving 10 years as the head coach at Cornell.
In his first season at the Heights, Donahue guided the Eagles to a 21-13 record, including a 9-7 mark in Atlantic Coast Conference action. BC earned a berth in the National Invitation Tournament and advanced to the second round.
Donahue established an up-tempo style of play that season and allowed the Eagles to lead the ACC in field goals made, and rank second in three-point field goal percentage and assist-turnover ratio, and third in assists.
The 2011-12 Eagles were an entirely new team as Donahue lost 10 lettermen and all five of his starters from the previous year. He brought in 11 newcomers and regularly started four freshmen. BC went 9-22, but beat No. 15 Florida State at home, 64-60, on February 8, 2012.
Donahue led Cornell to three consecutive Ivy League titles (2008-2010) and a trip to the 2010 NCAA Sweet 16.
In his 10 seasons leading the Big Red, Donahue totaled a 146-138 record. Cornell achieved the best Ivy record over the last five years (55-15) and Donahue was recognized for his work by being named a court coach by USA Basketball for the Under-18 national team trials in Washington, D.C., in July of 2008. Donahue coached and/or recruited seven of the school's top 13 all-time leading scorers, two Ivy League Player of the Year selections, two Ivy League Rookie of the Year players, eight NABC All-District selections, six Academic All-District picks and two Academic All-Americans.
Under his guidance, the Big Red recorded a perfect 14-0 Ivy League mark in 2007-08, joining Penn and Princeton as the only league schools to achieve that record. Cornell reached new heights in 2009-10, winning the program's third straight Ivy League title en route to an Ivy League-record 29 wins, the program's first NCAA win, and a trip to the Sweet 16. Cornell climbed as high as No. 22 nationally in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll, the program's first national ranking in 59 years, and set an Ivy League record for three-pointers in a season (326). The team also set single-season school records in points (2,545), field goals (913), assists (543) and blocked shots (127). The Big Red won the MSG Holiday Festival with a victory over St. John's, Cornell's first win over a Big East school since 1969, and captured a season-opening win at Alabama, the team's first win over a school from the Southeastern Conference since 1972. Cornell went 11-1 at home and won 18 games away from home, the most among any Division I school. The most attention was given to Cornell's effort in a 71-66 loss at No. 1 Kansas, a game the Big Red led with less than one minute to play. The Big Red then shocked the college basketball world as a No. 12 seed, knocking out both fifth-seeded Temple and fourth-seeded Wisconsin by double figures.
For his efforts, Donahue was named the Clair Bee Coach of the Year, the NABC District 4 Coach of the Year, the midseason Hugh Durham Coach of the Year by collegeinsider.com as the top mid-major coach in the country, and was a finalist for both the Hugh Durham Award and the Jim Phelan Award for national coach of the year.
Cornell earned its second consecutive Ivy League title in 2008-09, becoming the first team other than Penn or Princeton to win consecutive outright championships in conference history. The Big Red went 21-10 and won the Ancient Eight by three games with its 11-3 mark. It was the first time Cornell had posted consecutive 20-win seasons.
The 2007-08 district Coach of the Year according to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), the United States Basketball Writers' Association (USBWA) and CollegeInsider.com (Hugh Durham National Mid-Major Coach of the Year finalist), Donahue directed the 2007-08 Big Red to a 22-6 record and the program's first Ivy title in 20 years.
Off the court, Donahue expects his players to succeed in the classroom and contribute in their community. Cornell players made frequent appearances in local schools, speaking to students on the importance of a good education.
Renowned as a top recruiter and for his offensive mind while an assistant at the University of Pennsylvania, Donahue learned the trade from some of the nation's top coaches. Donahue served as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator under Fran Dunphy at Penn for 10 years. During his tenure as a Quaker assistant, he was heavily involved in the recruitment of five of Penn's top 20 all-time scorers. He was also instrumental in the Quakers winning six Ivy League titles in his last eight years there, advancing to the NCAA Tournament five times and earning national recognition with a top 25 ranking.
Prior to joining Dunphy's staff at Penn, Donahue coached for two seasons under Hall of Fame coach Herb Magee at Philadelphia University. During his two seasons there, the Rams won 20 games each season and also competed in the 1989 NCAA Division II tournament.
Donahue served as an assistant for current Lafayette head coach Fran O'Hanlon at Monsignor Bonner HS, helping to guide Bonner to the 1987-88 Philadelphia Catholic League championship. He began his coaching career at Springfield (Pa.) HS under Skip Werley, his former college coach. He served as head coach of the junior varsity and assistant coach for the varsity team for three seasons.
He played both baseball and basketball at Ursinus College, earning four letters in both sports. He served as basketball team captain as a senior. In his freshman season, Donahue helped the basketball squad finish 23-8 and advance to the NCAA Division III tournament's semifinal round. The following year, Ursinus advanced to the tournament's quarterfinal round. He graduated in 1984 with a bachelor's degree in economics and business administration.
Donahue and his wife, Pamela, have four children, Taylor (16), Matthew (15), Katie (10) and Jack (9).
A CLOSER LOOK AT DONAHUE
High School Education: Cardinal O'Hara; Springfield, Pa., 1980
College Education: Ursinus College, 1984; B.A.
Collegiate Playing Career: Four-year basketball and baseball letterman for the Bears.
Coaching Career: Assistant Coach, Springfield (Pa.) High School, 1984-87; Assistant Coach, Monsignor Bonner High School, 1987-88; Assistant Coach, Philadelphia University, 1988-90; Assistant Coach, University of Pennsylvania, 1990-2000; Head Coach, Cornell University, 2000-10; Head Coach, Boston College, 2010-present
Coaching Honors: 2004-05: Collegeinsider.com Ivy League Coach of the Year; 2007-08: NABC District 4 Coach of the Year, USBWA District II Coach of the Year; 2009-10: Clair Bee National Coach of the Year, NABC District 4 Coach of the Year