35th-year leader of the Lady Griz honored for 20th time
Montana to face either host DePaul or St. Mary's Saturday
The 2012-13 season is Annette Rocheleau's 32nd year as an assistant coach under longtime University of Montana head coach Robin Selvig. Rocheleau is the longest-tenured assistant coach in NCAA Division I women's basketball. She holds that title by a four-year margin over Connecticut's Chris Dailey and Stanford's Amy Tucker.
Rocheleau, a former two-year Lady Griz player (1979-80 to 1980-81), joined the UM coaching staff as the junior varsity coach for the 1981-82 and 1982-83 seasons before becoming Montana's first full-time assistant coach in September 1983.
Rocheleau has been on the Lady Griz coaching staff for all 19 of the program's NCAA tournament appearances and has either played on or coached all 22 regular-season conference championship teams.
As a player, junior varsity coach and full-time assistant coach, Rocheleau has been part of all but 13 of Selvig's 774 career victories.
Formerly Annette Whitaker, Rocheleau arrived at Montana as a walk-on in 1979. She made the Lady Griz team and became the starting point guard and team captain her first season.
Rocheleau was also the team captain as a senior and named the team's most inspirational player on Montana's first 20-win team (22-8) and first regular-season conference champion (Mountain Division of the Northwest Women's Basketball League).
Rocheleau transferred to Montana from Wenatchee Valley (Wash.) Junior College, where she won two state junior college championships.
A 1977 graduate of Cashmere (Wash.) High School, she was a four-year letterwinner in both basketball and tennis for the Bulldogs.
Rocheleau received her bachelor's degree in health and physical education from UM in 1982.
Rocheleau served as the Grizzlies' assistant golf coach in 1992-93 and 1993-94, the first two seasons of collegiate women's golf at UM.
She served as the assistant director of the Montana Special Olympics in both 1990 and 1991 and was the 2005 Ed Chinske Memorial Award winner at the Smurfit-Stone/KPAX Sports Banquet, which recognized her for services as a professional in athletics.
Rocheleau is married to Kevin Rocheleau, a former Grizzly basketball player. They have three sons, Beau, Brian and Ty, and a daughter, Trae, who is a freshman on the Montana soccer team.
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