The Western Michigan Division of Intercollegiate Athletics
officially announced the hiring of Shane Clipfell as the sixth women’s
basketball coach in program history, Friday, April 13, 2012.
Clipfell has strong ties in the state of Michigan, the Mid-American
Conference and the Midwest and has worked at every level of women’s
For the last 14 years, Clipfell has worked in different capacities on a
Suzy Merchant staff. He began with Merchant as an assistant at Eastern
Michigan during the 1998-99 season and has been at Michigan State the
last five years after Merchant took the Spartan helm in 2007-08. For the
past three years, Clipfell has served as the associate head coach at
Michigan State, coordinating the program’s recruiting efforts, including
organizing official, unofficial, off-campus and home visits.
In addition to recruiting, Clipfell focused on Michigan State’s
offensive game preparation, in-game adjustments and skill development of
perimeter players. The Spartans captured their first outright Big Ten
title in school history in 2010-11 and advanced to the NCAA
Tournament four-straight seasons.
While Clipfell was at Michigan State, the Spartans produced 17 All-Big
Ten recognitions, 20 Academic All-Big Ten selections, and several
players collected major Big Ten awards. Kalisha Keane was named Player
of the Year in 2010-11, after earning Sixth Player of the Year the
season prior. The Spartans had back-to-back Defensive Players of the
Year in Alyssa DeHaan (2009-10) and Lykendra Johnson (2010-11). Both
Keane and DeHaan were named All-Americans following their senior seasons
and DeHaan finished her career second all-time in NCAA history in
In the nine seasons prior to Michigan State at Eastern Michigan,
Clipfell helped build the Eagles into one of the top programs in the
MAC. Eastern Michigan compiled a record of 160-103 (.608), including
three 20-win seasons, three postseason appearances and two MAC West
Division titles. The 2003-04 team claimed the MAC West Division and MAC
Tournament championship for the first time in school history, earning
the program’s first-ever bid to the NCAA Tournament en route to a 22-8
Clipfell was the acting head coach at EMU for all but four games of the
2006-07 season, while Merchant was on maternity leave. He guided the
Eagles to a 13-12 record and a second place finish in the MAC
West with an 11-5 record. For his efforts, Clipfell received votes for
MAC Coach of the Year honors. Individually, senior Sarah VanMetre became
EMU’s first women’s basketball player to be named an Academic
All-American, senior Patrice McKinney was named MAC Defensive Player of
the Year and freshman Alyssa Pittman was named MAC Freshman of the Year.
Prior to joining Merchant’s staff at Eastern Michigan, Clipfell spent
five seasons at Glen Oaks Community College, including three as head
coach, and 11 years as the varsity head coach at Colon High School.
After spending two seasons as an assistant at Glen Oaks Community
College (1994-95), Clipfell took over the program in
1996 and tallied a 58-35 overall record. His 1997 team finished with a
No. 3 final ranking in the NJCAA after a 28-8 record and a fifth-place
finish in the NJCAA Tournament. For his efforts, he landed numerous
coaching awards, being named Coach of the Year for the Michigan
Community College Athletic Association, the Western Conference, and the
National District. In addition, he also earned the NJCAA Tournament
Sportsmanship Award. Clipfell coached a NJCAA second-team All-America
player in 1997, and a third-team All-America honoree in 1998.
While at Colon High School (1982-1998), Clipfell tallied a 185-65 career
varsity head coaching record. His teams captured seven conference
championships, three district championships, two regional championships
and one Final Four appearance. He assisted in seven of his players
receiving collegiate scholarships. He was named the area Coach of the
Year by the Sturgis Journal in 1990 and 1992. He was also named the
Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan Regional Coach of the Year in
1992, 1994 and 1995. In 2005, Clipfell was inducted into the Colon High
School Athletic Hall of Fame for his achievements.
In 1996, Clipfell coached an all-star team for 10 days in Austria and
then was selected to coach Athletes In Action for a summer tour in
Bolivia in 1997. He also served as the co-director of Glen Oaks
Community College summer basketball camps for three years.
Clipfell graduated from EMU in 2006 with a bachelor of science degree in
communications. Clipfell and his wife, Connie, have two adult children,
John and Lauren.