Arabie R. Conner, M.S.
Director of Athletics
Associate Professor of Physical Education
Arabie Conner is in her eighth year at the helm of Ottawa University’s athletic department. The previous seven years have brought many accomplishments for the Braves: 179 Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athletes, 40 NAIA All-Americans, 148 KCAC Players of the Week, 457 All-KCAC selections, eight teams have earned regular season KCAC Championships, and four have won KCAC Tournament Championships. From 2007-2012 18 teams were named NAIA Scholar Teams and under her watch the Ottawa University Athletic Department has been named a Five Star Champions of Character Institution four times. Nine coaches have been named KCAC Coach of the Year, two have been named KBCA College Coach of the Year and two have earned region coach of the year. Under Conner, the football team has qualified for three straight NAIA playoffs, won the KCAC Championship in 2009 and 2011, and hosted two NAIA Playoff games (2010, 2011). The women's soccer team won back-to-back KCAC regular season championships (2009, 2010) and twice has qualified for the NAIA National Tournament (2009, 2011). The men’s and women’s basketball teams have each reached the Sweet 16 of the NAIA Division II National Tournament. The men’s team made back to back appearances at the NAIA National Tournament (2006-07, 2007-08) for the first time in program history.
Before being named Athletic Director Conner spent 11 years as the head women’s basketball coach at Ottawa University, stepping down after a record breaking 2006-07 season. Conner finished as the all-time winningest coach in Lady Brave history with 162 victories. She earned the Kansas Basketball Coaches Associations Women’s College Basketball Coach of the Year award 2003-04 and again in 2006-07. In 2004, 2006 and 2007, Conner led the Lady Braves to the KCAC Basketball Tournament Championship and to the NAIA Division II National Tournament. She also helped OU to its first ‘Sweet 16’ appearance at the NAIA National Tournament in 2007.
Conner graduated from William Jewell College in 1992 with a degree in health/exercise science and English. She was a four year letterwinner on the basketball court for the Cardinals, earning HAAC Player of the Year in 1991. Conner is fourth all-time in career scoring (1,893). Conner also played softball and soccer for WJC and after her playing days, she was an assistant coach on the women’s basketball team. Conner was named William Jewell Athlete of the Year twice and was inducted into William Jewell’s Hall-of-Fame in 2004.
Conner earned a master’s degree in sports administration and sport psychology from the University of Kansas. She has been an associate professor in the OU Physical Education department, taught in the Liberal Arts Studies Program and is the first female athletic director in school history.
Conner resides in Ottawa with her husband, Tim, and their children Cole (11), Kylie (10), Zoey (8) and Brodie (7).
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