Andy Crane serves as the recruiting coordinator and an assistant coach for the Youngstown State women's basketball program under Head Coach John Barnes. He completed his fifth year as a Penguin in 2017-18.
Crane's recruiting efforts have helped the Penguins assemble talented and deep rosters that have helped the program play in the postseason three times in his five-season tenure. Youngstown State won 21 games and earned postseason tournament bids in both 2014-15 and 2015-16, and it returned to the postseason in 2017-18. At the same time, Youngstown State has also been on the WBCA Top 25 Academic Honor Roll three times.
With a wide-spread network, Crane and the YSU staff have been able to competitively recruit student-athletes with impressive accomplishments in high school and AAU. The Penguins have signed some of the best players in the state from Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.
Three of YSU’s recruits under Crane have gone on to earn Horizon League All-Freshman Team honors. Mary Dunn was the conference’s Freshman of the Year in 2016-17, and Indiya Benjamin and Chelsea Olson were all-freshman team selections in 2014-15 and 2017-18, respectively.
Benjamin was part of YSU’s first recruiting class under Barnes and Crane that went on to earn three postseason bids. She finished her career by setting program records for career assists, minutes, games played and games started, and she became just the second player to lead the Horizon League in assists in three straight seasons. The assists record that she broke had stood for 32 years. Nikki Arbanas, another member of the class, broke YSU’s career 3-pointers record in just three years.
In 2017-18, Olson and McKenah Peters combined to earn the Horizon League Freshman of the Week honor in five of the final six weeks of the regular season. Olson was tabbed the top freshman a record-breaking four consecutive weeks, and she showed the potential to be a star as she averaged 10.1 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists while making 33 3-pointers in conference play.
In 2016-17, Dunn led all conference freshmen in scoring and field-goal percentage as she became the first Penguin to be named Horizon League Freshman of the Year since 2001-02. Another freshman, Natalie Myers, became the first freshman to lead the team in rebounding since 2009-10.
The 2015 class was ranked as one of the top 25 percent in the country on signing day, and three of the four freshmen on the 2015-16 team were named First-Team All-Ohio after their senior years. Melinda Trimmer was named the Co-Player of the Year at the Division II level, and Alison Smolinski was a first-team all-state selection at the Division I level. Smolinski went on to lead the Horizon League in 3-pointers as a sophomore.
In addition to Crane's responsibilities as the recruiting coordinator, he oversees official and unofficial visits, assists in the development of YSU's wings, scouts opponents and helps with game and practice preparation. Under Crane’s tutelage, Youngstown State has led the Horizon League in 3-pointers per game in four straight seasons. The Penguins who own the top three spots on the program’s career 3-pointers list all played under Crane and Barnes.
Crane, like Barnes, came to Youngstown with a year of experience in the Horizon League to his credit. Crane was an assistant at Cleveland State in 2012-13, and he had five more seasons of collegiate coaching experience before coming to YSU. Additionally, he spent three years as a head coach at Team Wisconsin Select, a top AAU program.
In his lone year at Cleveland State, Crane coached the Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year and one of the top scorers in the country in Shalonda Winton. The Vikings beat Ole Miss and Indiana with Crane on the bench, earning their first win ever over an SEC opponent and their second victory over a Big Ten program.
Prior to his arrival at Cleveland State, Crane spent four seasons (2007-09 and 2010-12) as an assistant at the University of Dubuque in Iowa. The Spartans experienced new milestones under Crane, posting their best regular season finish in program history and their first Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tournament win. Crane successfully recruited to Dubuque six all-state players, six WBCA All Stars, two McDonald's All-America Nominees and a Minnesota Ms. Basketball finalist.
Crane coached the guards for three seasons at Dubuque and helped develop eight all-conference performers. One of those set the conference record for assists and ranked in the top 20 in NCAA Division III history in assists. He coached the post players in 2011-12 as Dubuque finished 15-10, its best regular season record in program history.
He coached at Ellsworth Community College in Iowa in 2009-10 and recruited the first NJCAA Pre-Season All-American in program history. He also brought in two all-region players, including the second-leading scorer in the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference.
In addition to his collegiate coaching, Crane spent three years as the head coach of Team Wisconsin Select, an elite AAU program that had a roster that included some of the top players in the 2013 and 2014 classes in Iowa and Wisconsin. He coached the club to championships at the 2011 USJN "Battle of the Programs" and the 2011 USJN Great American Showcase.
Crane also spent two years as a skill instructor under Mike Lee, who is regarded as one of the premier skill instructors in the country. In 2011-12, he was a lead evaluator and contributing writer for Midwest Recruiting Report in Chicago.
A native of Baraboo, Wis., Crane earned a bachelor's degree in psychology of coaching from Dubuque in 2009. He and his wife, Kristi, have a baby daughter named Ivy.
2013-Present — Youngstown State Assistant Coach
2012-13 — Cleveland State Assistant Coach
2010-12 — Dubuque Assistant Coach
2009-10 — Ellsworth Community College Assistant Coach
2007-09 — Dubuque Assistant Coach