“We’re very excited to be considered one of the top teams in the Horizon League,” head coach Beth Couture said. “At the same time, we understand it takes hard work and commitment to be at the top in March. We’ve had a great start to practice and we’re excited about our team this season.”
Butler has won 20 games in each of the past three seasons and made two straight trips to the WNIT. The Bulldogs finished second with a 14-4 league record last year and advanced to the 2010 Horizon League Women’s Basketball Championship game. Couture, in her ninth season at Butler, has guided the program to a 14-4 mark in the league in each of the last two seasons.
Green Bay, which earned the league’s first NCAA at-large bid last season, was picked as the league favorite. Detroit was picked third after Butler, followed by Cleveland State and UIC in a tie for fourth in the voting.
In addition to the league standings predictions, the league announced preseason All-Horizon League teams. Senior guard/forward Brittany Bowen was voted preseason second team All-Horizon League, earning that distinction for the second straight year. Bowen was second on the team in scoring last year, averaging 11.2 points per game. She ranked third in the Horizon League in 3-point percentage (.392) and fifth in free throw percentage (.817).
“We’re proud of Brittany and what she’s done at Butler,” she’s helped lead the team to three 20-win seasons. It has been obvious in our practices that she is hungry to not only earn individual awards, but also help lead our program to the next step in our journey.
Butler returns four players who started 15 games from last year’s team. The Bulldogs open the 2010-11 season with a Nov. 7 exhibition against Hilldale at Hinkle Fieldhouse. The regular season opener is Friday, Nov. 12 at Bradley.