Michael Llanas is in his 14th season as head coach of the Owens women’s basketball program.
Llanas, the program’s all-time wins leader, has amassed a career record of 325-97 (143-29 OCCAC) entering 2017-18 and has averaged 25 wins per year at Owens. In the past five seasons, he has led the program to five OCCAC championships and three top 10 finishes at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament.
In 2016-17, the Llanas led Owens team completed the college's first undefeated regular season at 30-0 before finishing 31-1. For the third straight season, the team completed an undefeated conference season en route to its fifth straight OCCAC title. The team broke or tied 18 program records, led the nation in points, steals and rebounds per game, allowed the fewest points per game in the nation and made the most field goals of any team in the country. The team also shattered the program record for most 100 point games in a season with 12. Furthermore, the team will carry a 44-game overall regular season winning streak and a 51-game regular season conference winning streak into the 2017-18 season. Since February 2012, Owens is 75-1 at home in the regular season under the leadership of Llanas.
Following the season, Llanas captured his third straight and sixth overall OCCAC coach of the year award. Sophomore forward Jeryn Reese became the program's first-ever back-to-back OCCAC player of the year, and sophomore guard Ariel Bethea became the program's all-time single season and career steals leader en route to being named the inaugural OCCAC defensive player of the year.
The 2015-16 season saw Llanas capture the OCCAC and Region XII District I coach of the year awards for the second straight season after leading Owens to a 29-7 record overall and a second straight 14-0 conference championship season despite losing their top six scorers from the prior season. The team produced a 17-game winning streak, scored 100 or more points a record nine times (the record was broken by the 2016-17 team), won its fourth straight conference championship, captured its second straight Region XII District I championship and finished fifth at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. The team averaged 81.0 points per game, but did so in a balanced effort as six players averaged in double figures. Furthermore, a pair of freshmen, Jeryn Reese and Aysah Ingram, each averaged a double-double, while Reese garnered a slew of awards including NJCAA Second Team All-American recognition. One sophomore, Lakyn Gulley, broke four program records before signing with NCAA Division I Southeast Missouri State University. Another sophomore, point guard Briana Williams, became the program's all-time career assists leader.
In 2014-15, Llanas led Owens to its best season in program history behind a strong freshman guard class mixed in with an outstanding sophomore class that produced 85 points per game, while holding opponents to just 60.9 per contest. They finished 34-2 overall and 14-0 in OCCAC play, while capturing a college record 33 straight wins, the program's first undefeated conference season, its third straight OCCAC title, its second Region XII District I championship in three years and a third place finish at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. The team's two losses was its lowest single season loss total in program history until the 2016-17 team only lost one game. Following the season, six players signed with four-year schools led by NCAA Division I signees Sierra Harley, who was named an NJCAA First Team All-American, and Ashley Tunstall, who went on to become a captain at NCAA Division I Bowling Green State University. Those two players combined for 29.8 points per game, while Demy Whitaker averaged 10.3 points per contest as a freshman. For his efforts, Llanas was named the OCCAC and Region XII District I coach of the year.
In 2013-14, Llanas led the Express to a 26-3 overall record, including a then program record tying 18 straight wins. Their three losses also tied the 1996-97 team for fewest losses in a single season until the 2014-15 and 2016-17 teams upended the mark. The program won its second straight OCCAC championship and its third over the previous four years. The season came to an end in the district championship game, just one step away from a return trip to the NJCAA Division II National Tournament. Sophomore point guard Kamilah Carter had one of the best seasons in program history by averaging 19.3 points per game.
In 2012-13, Llanas and Owens broke through to the national tournament for the first time since 2003-04 despite losing its top scorer, Emma-Jean Ricketts, for all of the postseason. The team finished 28-8, won the OCCAC title and captured the Region XII District I tournament championship. After dropping their first game in OT at the NJCAA D-II National Tournament, Owens rattled off three straight wins to place seventh. It was the program’s highest finish in the current 16-team format until the 2014-15 and 2015-16 teams finished higher. Llanas won his first of three Region XII District I Coach of the Year awards this year.
Over the past eight seasons, Llanas has guided Owens to a 227-38 record - winning at least 25 games each year. In 2011-12, the team finished 25-6 overall and Llanas was the OCCAC Coach of the Year. In 2010-11, Owens finished 27-5 overall, won the OCCAC title and had a program record 11-0 start to the season (until the 2016-17 team went 30-0). In 2009-10, he led the team to a previous program record 18 consecutive wins and a 27-6 overall record. In 2006-07, he guided Owens to a 12-2 conference record, which resulted in his first conference championship and OCCAC Coach of the Year award.
Over the past eight seasons, the team has five undefeated home records.
Llanas, the seventh head coach in the program’s history, has had 46 student-athletes selected to the All-OCCAC team, including 19 First-Team selections and four OCCAC Player of the Year selections (Jeryn Reese in 2015-16 and 2016-17, Sierra Harley in 2014-15 and Jasmine Blanton in 2010-11). Additionally, he has had 16 student-athletes selected to the All-Region XII team and seven WBCA All-Americans.
Academically, Llanas has coached 28 Academic All-OCCAC selections and 12 NJCAA Academic All-Americans, including Haili Mossing in 2016-17. He has also sent 37 players to four-year schools, including Jeryn Reese (NCAA D-I La Salle University) and Sybil Roseboro (NAIA Indiana University East) in 2016-17.
Llanas, who has guided Owens to seven conference championships, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Multidisciplinary Studies from Siena Heights University. He also holds certifications as an On Scene Incident Commander from the University of Findlay and International Organization of Standardization Training from the Northeastern Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Center. Moreover, he is currently the Environmental Health and Safety Specialist at IAC Group.
Llanas and his wife, Kelly, have a daughter, Cora, and two sons, Andrew and Emilio.