Jennifer Rizzotti, Joe Lewandowski named U.S. Olympic 3x3 basketball coaches

Jennifer Rizzotti, Joe Lewandowski named U.S. Olympic 3x3 basketball coaches

Jennifer Rizzotti and Joe Lewandowski were named head coaches of the U.S. Olympic 3x3 basketball teams on Thursday.

Rizzotti will lead a U.S. women's team eyeing repeat gold in Paris after winning the event's Olympic debut in Tokyo.

Last June, Rizzotti was the head coach of the U.S. 3x3 team that won the World Cup. That four-woman roster included NCAA stars Cameron Brink (Stanford) and Hailey Van Lith (LSU transfer from Louisville), plus former WNBA players Cierra Burdick and Linnae Harper.

Rizzotti also serves as chair of the USA Basketball Women’s National Team committee, which selects the 5x5 roster for the Olympics.

Rizzotti was the 1996 Associated Press Player of the Year at UConn, then played in the WNBA from 1999 to 2003 during her 17-season stint as University of Hartford head coach. She also coached George Washington from 2016-21.

Lewandowski will coach the first U.S. Olympic men's 3x3 team after the Americans did not qualify for Tokyo.

Lewandowski was head coach at last June's World Cup, where a U.S. men’s team headlined by 2011 NCAA Player of the Year Jimmer Fredette took silver, losing 21-19 to Serbia in the final.

Lewandowski has been coaching and advising the USA Basketball 3x3 program since 2014.

A committee will choose the U.S. men’s and women’s rosters of four players each for Paris. Each player must have recent 3x3 experience. Active NBA players are not expected to take part.

In 3x3, teams play outdoors on a half-court with a 10-minute game clock and 12-second shot clock. The first team to 21 points via one-point and two-point field goals wins, or whichever team is leading when time expires.

Coaches are not allowed on the court during 3x3 games.