Charli Turner Thorne

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Charli Turner Thorne
Charlie Turner Thorne bio photo.jpg
Current position
TitleHead coach
TeamArizona State
Record431–249 (.634)
Biographical details
Born (1966-03-10) March 10, 1966 (age 52)
Playing career
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1988–1990Washington (grad. asst.)
1990–1993Santa Clara (asst.)
1993–1996Northern Arizona
1996–presentArizona State
Head coaching record
Overall471–289 (.620)
Accomplishments and honors
Pac-10 Championship 2001
Pac-10 Tournament Championship 2002
Pac-10 Coach of the Year 2001

Charli Turner Thorne (born March 10, 1966)[1] is the Arizona State Sun Devils head women's basketball coach. She is the winningest Sun Devil coach since the team was established (343-208) and, in 2009, stood as No. 4 in the Pac-10/Pac-12 in terms of most career wins.[2]


Turner Thorne studied psychology at Stanford University where she played basketball under Tara VanDerveer. She graduated in 1988 with a bachelor's degree and later studied for a master's degree in education at the University of Washington, graduating in 1990. She is married to Will Thorne and they have three children.[3]

Coaching career[edit]

Turner Thorne began her coaching career as a graduate assistant at Washington in 1988, then an assistant coach at Santa Clara in 1990.[4] In 1993, Turner Thorne became head coach at Northern Arizona, winning consecutive seasons in 1994-95 and 1995–96, the first time the school had accomplished this. She then took a job coaching at Arizona State University for the start of the 1996 season. Turner Thorne has led the Arizona State women's basketball team to the NCAA Tournament seven times. This achievement is four more than in the 15 years prior to her arrival as coach.

In the 2004-05 season, the Sun Devils under Turner Thorne gained a 24-10 overall record and its first NCAA Sweet Sixteen appearance in 22 years. The team also gained a record of 25-9, which met the single-season school record for most wins at that time. ASU shared the Pac-10 title in 2001 and the inaugural Pac-10 Tournament title in 2002, the first league championships the school had achieved.

In the 2006-07 season, the Sun Devils achieved 31 wins, including a school record 16 Pac-10 wins, which brought them to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament for the first time. At the end of the 2006-07 season, the Sun Devils ranked No. 8 in the final USA Today/ESPN coaches poll and No. 10 in the final Associated Press poll, the highest final rankings in each poll the school had achieved. In the summer of 2007 Turner Thorne served as an assistant coach on USA Basketball's U-21 World Championship Team which won the gold medal at the U-21 FIBA World Championship in Moscow, Russia.[5]

In 2009 the Sun Devils rejoined the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three seasons under Turner Thorne's leadership. Having achieved 26 wins in the 2008-09 season, Turner Thorne became one of three Pac-10 coaches alongside University of Washington head coach Chris Gobrecht and Stanford University head coach Tara VanDerveer to have led their respective schools to five or more consecutive 20-win seasons.

During the summer of 2009, Turner Thorne served as the head coach of the USA Women's World University Games Team which won the gold medal at the 2009 World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia, having won all seven of their games. It was Turner Thorne's second time working with USA Basketball.[5][6]

In July 2009, Turner Thorne became vice president of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association's (WBCA) Executive Committee.[7]

For the 2011–12 basketball season, Turner Thorne took a leave of absence from her coaching duties and returned for the 2012–13 season.[8]

Year-by-year results[edit]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Northern Arizona Lumberjacks (Big Sky Conference) (1993–1996)
1993–94 Northern Arizona 12–15 6–8 T-4th
1994–95 Northern Arizona 14–12 6–8 5th
1995–96 Northern Arizona 14–13 6–8 5th
Northern Arizona: 40–40 (.500) 18–24 (.429)
Arizona State Sun Devils (Pacific-10 Conference) (1996–2011)
1996–97 Arizona State 9–19 3–15 9th
1997–98 Arizona State 10–17 6–12 T-7th
1998–99 Arizona State 12–15 6–12 T-6th
1999–00 Arizona State 14–15 7–11 7th WNIT 1st Round
2000–01 Arizona State 20–11 12–6 T-1st NCAA First Round
2001–02 Arizona State 25–9 12–6 T-2nd NCAA Second Round
2002–03 Arizona State 16–14 7–11 8th WNIT 2nd Round
2003–04 Arizona State 17–12 11–7 T-3rd WNIT 1st Round
2004–05 Arizona State 24–10 12–6 T-2nd NCAA Sweet Sixteen
2005–06 Arizona State 25–7 14–4 2nd NCAA Second Round
2006–07 Arizona State 31–5 16–2 2nd NCAA Elite Eight
2007–08 Arizona State 22–11 14–4 3rd NCAA Second Round
2008–09 Arizona State 26–9 15–3 T-2nd NCAA Elite Eight
2009–10 Arizona State 18–14 9–9 5th WNIT 2nd Round
2010–11 Arizona State 20–11 11–7 3rd NCAA First Round
Arizona State Sun Devils (Pac-12 Conference) (2012–present)
2012–13 Arizona State 13–18 5–13 9th
2013–14 Arizona State 23–10 11–7 4th NCAA Second Round
2014–15 Arizona State 29–6 15–3 2nd NCAA Sweet Sixteen
2015–16 Arizona State 26–7 16–2 T-1st NCAA Second Round
2016–17 Arizona State 20–13 9–9 5th NCAA Second Round
2017–18 Arizona State 22–13 10–8 6th NCAA Second Round
2018–19 Arizona State 9–3 0–1
Arizona State: 431–249 (.634) 217–158 (.579)
Total: 471–289 (.620)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


  1. ^ "Women's Basketball Coaches Career". NCAA. Retrieved 22 Sep 2015.
  2. ^ Sun Devils Biography of Charli Turner Thorne
  3. ^ Charli Turner Thorne Gives Birth To Third Son Tuesday Morning December 30, 2003 Archived April 2, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Orton, Kathy (June 19, 1996). "Basketball junkie lands job at ASU". Los Angeles Daily News. Retrieved July 12, 2016.
  5. ^ a b "Arizona State University Athletics Official Website". ASU Athletics. Archived from the original on 2009-08-25. Retrieved 2009-10-13.
  6. ^ "TWENTY-FIFTH WORLD UNIVERSITY GAMES -- 2009". Retrieved 2016-01-31.
  7. ^ Southwestern University RUDER REAPPOINTED AS WBCA EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBER July 7, 2009 retrieved 23 October 2009
  8. ^ Metcalfe, Jeff (May 2, 2011). "Charli Turner Thorne to take leave of absence from ASU basketball". Arizona Republic. Retrieved July 5, 2011.