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Notre Dame's Hall of Fame basketball coach Muffet McGraw announces retirement

Jason Owens
·2 min read
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Muffet McGraw is retiring as the head coach of Notre Dame’s women’s basketball team at 64 years old.

McGraw coached the Fighting Irish for 33 seasons, where she compiled an 848-252 record and led the Fighting Irish to nine Final Fours and national championships in 2001 and 2018. She was named Associated Press National Coach of the Year four times and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2017.

Her overall coaching record in 38 college basketball seasons is 936-293. She was the head coach at Lehigh for five seasons before taking over at Notre Dame.

“It has been my great honor to represent the University of Notre Dame these past 33 seasons, but the time has come for me to step down as your head basketball coach,” McGraw wrote in her Wednesday announcement. ... “I am grateful to have worked with the best assistant coaches in the business, and I have been blessed to coach so many phenomenal women.

“To the best fans in the country, it was my honor an privilege to play for you.”

McGraw built Notre Dame into a winner

Notre Dame had never made the NCAA tournament prior to McGraw taking over the program in 1987. The Irish made their first NCAA tournament appearance in 1994 and are in the midst of a streak of 24 straight appearances that started in 1996.

That streak includes seven straight Final Four appearances from 2011 to 2018.

Muffet McGraw coached the Fighting Irish to nine Final Fours and two national championships. (AP Photo/Robert Franklin)
Muffet McGraw coached the Fighting Irish to nine Final Fours and two national championships. (AP Photo/Robert Franklin)

Former ND point guard Niele Ivey takes over

Shortly after McGraw announced her retirement, Notre Dame announced that former Notre Dame and WNBA player and Memphis Grizzlies assistant coach Niele Ivey will take over as head coach. Ivey was an assistant on McGraw’s staff before leaving for the NBA in 2019.

Ivey was an All-American point guard at Notre Dame and played on the 2001 national championship team.

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