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Candrea USOC Coach of Year finalist
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 20, 2008
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USA Softballˇ?s Mike Candrea named finalist for USOC Coach of the Year

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. --- The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) announced this week that USA Softballˇ?s Mike Candrea, currently on partial leave from his head coaching job at the University of Arizona, is one of five finalists for its 2007 National Coach of the Year honors. The awards will be presented on April 15 during the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit in Chicago, Ill.

"I am honored to be among the finalists for this award," said Candrea. "I am privileged to be coaching this group of athletes and to be around the staff we have. This is a great honor for the USA Softball program and demonstrates the outstanding effort of what these athletes have done on the field."

This marks the fifth time he has been honored as a finalist and most notably no one coach has been honored as many times as he has. In 2004, following the Athens Olympic Games, Candrea won the National Coach of the Year after leading the team to its third consecutive Olympic Gold.

In 2007, Candrea led the U.S. Women's National Team to a 24-1 season record and to gold medal finishes at the Canada Cup (10-0), the World Cup (6-0), the Pan American Games (4-0) and the Japan Cup (4-1). His team outscored opponents 183-14 while the pitching staff combined for a 0.20 ERA over three summer competitions.

As the head coach for the University of Arizona, Candrea has led the Wildcats to back-to-back NCAA National Championship titles in 2006 and 2007, was named the Pac-10 Coach of the Year for the 10 th time, and won his 1100th NCAA Division I game.

The other finalists include Guy Baker (Long Beach, Calif./Women's Water Polo), Bob Bowman (Ann Arbor, Mich./Swimming), David Johnson (Colorado Springs, Colo./Shooting), and Tom Terhaar (Monmouth Junction, N.J./Rowing).