Market Research Record – The University of Cincinnati athletics department is deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Florence Sifa, a former standout women’s basketball student-athlete. Known affectionately as “FoFo” by her teammates, Sifa played an integral role on the court during her time at Cincinnati from 2018-2020, following her initial stint at Jacksonville College. Her contributions as a guard propelled the Bearcats to consecutive 20-win seasons, a significant achievement not seen in nearly two decades. Under Sifa’s leadership, the team also made an impressive run to the 2019 WNIT Quarterfinals, marking one of the program’s most memorable postseason performances. Her outstanding performance earned her the distinction of being named the 2019 American Athletic Conference Newcomer of the Year.
John Cunningham, the Director of Athletics, expressed his heartfelt condolences, stating, “FoFo was a true leader within our Bearcats women’s basketball program. Her radiant personality, unwavering determination, and commitment to winning were contagious. When I first arrived at Cincinnati, I was immediately drawn to FoFo’s passion and hustle on the court. Today is truly a somber day for Cincinnati Athletics, as we mourn her untimely loss. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family during this difficult time.”
Throughout her career, Sifa maintained solid statistics, averaging 6.8 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 60 steals in 20.0 minutes per game. Hailing from Bujumbura, Burundi, she showcased her exceptional skills as a player for Burundi’s Berco Stars and represented her country proudly on the international stage.
Katrina Merriweather, the head coach of Cincinnati women’s basketball, expressed her condolences, stating, “The entire Bearcats family is deeply saddened by the news of losing one of our own. Although I did not have the privilege of coaching FoFo, every individual who wears this jersey becomes a part of our family. We extend our love and support to her family, loved ones, friends, coaches, and teammates during this challenging time.”