When Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski retires at the end of this upcoming season, he will do so as one of the most accomplished coaches in NCAA history.
No one has won more games. Only one coach has won more national championships. He is tied for the most Naismith College Coach of the Year honors.
He is already a basketball and College Basketball Hall of Famer.
We’re taking a look at the numbers behind Krzyzewski’s illustrious career.
47 years of coaching
Krzyzewski has been coaching NCAA basketball for 46 years, but with news that the 2021–22 campaign will be his last, he will be retiring after 47 years at the helm of a program.
Few coaches can match that number. Fogg Allen has coached most seasons, since he began coaching with Baker in 1905 and completed his 50th season of coaching with Kansas in 1956. Jim Phelan took a head coaching gig at Mount St. Mary’s in 1954 after a year as an assistant and remained head coach for 49 years.
next? Well, that’s Krzyzewski. He’s been at Duke for 41 years—about 42 years old—and spent the last five years coaching his mother army. This was followed by a one-year assistant coaching gig under his former head coach, Bob Knight.
1,170 coaching victories
That number will change by the end of the year, but for now their current winning total is 1,170.
In 2016, he became the winningest coach in NCAA Tournament play with his 90th win at March Madness. In 2017, he scored his 1,000th win to become the first men’s Division I coach to reach four points. The following year, he passed the Pat Summit for the most wins by a Division I coach. In 2019, he surpassed Harry Statham to claim the title of most wins by a college basketball coach at any level or of any gender.
He has put these victories together with remarkable consistency. Since joining Duke in 1980, he has won at least 20 games in 35 of his 41 seasons. He went on to reach 30 wins in 13 of those seasons.
However, at some point his all-time victory could potentially be in jeopardy. Herb Magee, the current Division II men’s basketball coach at Thomas Jefferson University, sits on 1,123 wins. Stanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerweer is coming off a national championship win and 1,125 victories in her career, while Yukon women’s coach Jenno Auriemma has 1,119 wins and signed an extension to put her at the top of the Huskies .
But the only active Division I men’s coach close to Krzyzewski is Syracuse’s Jim Boehm, who has 982 wins.
5 National Championships
Wins are great during the regular season, but coaches stick around for their ability to bring in new banners in large part. And only UCLA’s John Wooden brought more NCAA titles to his schedule.
Coaching the Blue Devils, Duke was crowned national champion five times: 1991, 1992, 2001, 2010 and 2015. Back-to-back championships made him the fifth coach to win the title in consecutive years. Wooden holds the record for seven consecutive wins from 1967 to 1973. Billy Donovan in Florida finished sixth with consecutive wins in 2006 and 2007.
Krzyzewski’s success in March Madness can be measured in more than just five rings. His 12 last four appearances are tied with the most woodwork by any coach and his 97 wins in the tournament stand alone – with rival UNC coach Roy Williams second on 79.
And Krzyzewski continued that tournament success in conference play. He won 15 ACC tournaments during his career to go along with 12 regular season ACC titles.
3 Naismith College Coach of the Year Honors
With all the victories, national championships, and various achievements, it should be no surprise that Krzyzewski has plenty of personal hardware to recognize his successes.
He has been named Naismith College Coach of the Year three times, the highest honor given to NCAA Division I coaches. Krzyzewski received the honor in 1989, 1992 and 1999.
John Calipari is the only other men’s coach with three, having won with UMass in 1996, with Memphis in 2008 and with Kentucky in 2015. Auriemma has won the women’s coaching honor eight times, Summit has won it five times and Muffett McGraw and VanDerweer have won it three times.
Krzyzewski has also claimed other coaching honors. He is the winner of the 1986 UPI Coach of the Year, the 1991 National Association of Basketball Coaches Coach of the Year, the 2004 Claire B Coach of the Year and a five-time winner of the ACC Coach of the Year. He was named the conference’s top coach in 1984, 1986, 1997, 1999 and 2000. He was also named Sporting News Coach of the Year in 1992.
72 nba players
When top high school recruits are considering college options for basketball, the first thing they look at is whether a program develops NBA talent. Under Krzyzewski at Duke, there were few programs that were compared.
Since he took office in 1980, 72 players wearing Blue Devils uniforms have played in the NBA. Of those 72, 28 have appeared in NBA games this season.
And how good were those players? Collectively, they have averaged 24 minutes per game in their careers, posting game averages of 10.5 points, 4.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists.
Grant Hill, Alton Brand, Kyrie Irving, Jason Tatum, Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson, JJ Reddick, Jabari Parker and many others have come through the coaching of Durham and Krzyzewski to reach the NBA floor.
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