Arizona State held a very impromptu press conference Monday afternoon. With less than an hour's notice the word went out about an announcement. That announcement it turns out is the leave of absence for women's basketball coach, Charli Turner Thorne.
According to the press release, Turner Thorne asked for unpaid voluntary leave of absence for the 2011-12 season. She is currently planning on returning in the spring of 2012.
"At this point in my career and with the foundation for our program firmly established, I am going to spend some time regaining balance in my life which I know will help me grow and become a better coach.," says Turner Thorne.
"Our program is extremely strong right now and will continue great progress with a wonderful coaching staff, a great group of returning players and a lot of new energy and talent from our incoming recruits. I feel blessed to have the understanding of President Dr. Michael Crow, Lisa Love and Senior Associate Athletic Director Don Bocchi. I am excited to continue my leadership role as President of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). I will take full advantage of this opportunity to recenter myself, have more family time and improve as a coach."
Current staff member Joseph Anders will be the interim head coach for the 2011-12 season.
According to the press release, Turner Thorne "has led the ASU program for the past 15 seasons, a mark for longevity matched or topped by only three Pac-10 women's basketball coaches in the Pac-10's history of hosting women's championships (1986 to 2011)."