Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer becomes college basketball’s winningest coach ever

Stanford University’s Tara VanDerveer is now the all-time winningest coach in all of NCAA basketball history after the Cardinal defeated the Oregon State Beavers 65-56 Sunday at the Maples Pavilion in California.

The win gives the VanDerveer 1,203 career wins during her 45-year coaching career, one win clear of former Duke men’s basketball head coach and fellow Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Mike Krzyzewski.

Stanford was powered Sunday by junior forward Kiki Iriafen, who had 12 rebounds and a career-high 36 points.

After the milestone win, VanDerveer was characteristically humble about what the record means.

“It means I’ve coached a lot of great players, had great staff, worked at great universities, and I’m just so blessed and so thankful,” VanDerveer told broadcaster Pac-12 Network after the game.

Vanderveer, 70, is in her 38th season at Stanford – 1985 to 1995 and 1996 through this season. She has won three national titles at Stanford and was named the national coach of the year five times.

She also coached at the University of Idaho and Ohio State. In 2011, she was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

On Friday, Sanford’s victory over Oregon saw VanDerveer tie with Krzyzewski for the NCAA record for career wins.

“It’s just a tribute to the great teams I had, the great places I’ve worked,” VanDerveer told the Pac-12 Network after that game. “I think it’s great for women’s basketball that there’s a lot of attention and we’re having just a super season.”

Krzyzewski, affectionately known as “Coach K,” shared a congratulatory message for VanDerveer after she broke his record.

“This is a tremendous accomplishment for Tara VanDerveer, who is already one of the most accomplished coaches in the history of basketball,” he said in a statement. “This is yet another milestone to add to an amazing legacy.

“More important than all the astounding numbers and career accomplishments, she’s positively impacted countless lives as a coach and a mentor. Tara remains a true guardian of our sport.”

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