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Class of 1991
UCLA: 1975 - 1996
During her 21 years as head coach of UCLA, Sharron Backus compiled an 847-167-3 record. She led the Bruins to eight national championships, while compiling a postseason record of 118-32. Since the NCAA began staging women’s championships during the 1981-82 season, UCLA reached the Women’s College World Series 14 of 15 years and won seven titles, including three straight from 1988-90.
She also coached five Honda-Broderick Award winners, an award presented to the nation’s top softball player, eight times in 12 seasons. Under her guidance, no less than 29 Bruins earned all-America accolades a total of 53 times. She also coached eventual gold medal-winners Dot Richardson, Lisa Fernandez and Sheila Cornell-Douty. In addition, Backus was involved in the PFX Tour.
Backus was inducted into the NFCA Hall of Fame in 1991, but she also is a member of halls of fame for the ASA (1985), Women's Sports Foundation (1991), UCLA (2001), Anaheim High School (2001) and Fullerton College (2007).
She played amateur softball from 1961 to 1975 before playing pro ball for two seasons for the Connecticut Falcons. A native Californian, she started her amateur career with the Whittier Gold Sox in 1961 and played for them until 1964 when she joined the Orange Lionettes. She then moved to the Raybestos Brakettes from 1969 to 1975.
Backus attended Fullerton College (known then as Fullerton Junior College) before graduating from Cal State Fullerton in 1969. She also did post-graduate work at Pepperdine and Cal State Fullerton. Before being named head coach at UCLA, she taught and coached at Western High School in Anaheim, California.