"It is wonderful to be a part of the Purdue family," Benner says. "Purdue is an amazing institution that couples not only world-class academics but some of the best athletic teams in the nation. I can't imagine a place I would rather be."
At Indiana, Benner helped guide the Hoosiers to a 19-14 season which concluded in the quarterfinals of the WNIT. It was the first time in four years that Indiana played in the postseason. Benner also was instrumental in signing a recruiting class ranked in the top-40 nationally.
Prior to Indiana, Benner was an assistant coach at Maine for 12 years, including the last three as associate head coach. The Black Bears enjoyed tremendous success during Benner's time. They won eight regular-season conference championships, five America East Tournament titles, and earned seven NCAA tournament appearances. Benner coached six America East Players of the Year and three conference Rookies of the Year. The Black Bears put at least one player on the all-conference first team every year but one during Benner's tenure.
Benner also was influential in the recruitment and development of two of Maine's All-Americans, Cindy Blodgett and Jamie Cassidy. Blodgett's 3,005 career points are a Maine record and was good for the fifth highest total in NCAA history at the time of her graduation in 1998. She was selected sixth in the 1998 WNBA draft by the Cleveland Rockers. Cassidy totaled nearly 2,500 points and almost 1,000 rebounds which allowed her to sign as a free agent with the Miami Sol after graduation.
Benner's achievements were rewarded in 1998 when he was chosen to serve as an assistant coach to the United States collegiate all-star team that competed in France.
A native of Wiscasset, Maine, Benner graduated from Maine in 1992 with a bachelor's degree in psychology. He and his wife, Christine, live in Lafayette. They have two children, Kate (8) and Luke (5).