Stanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer tied Duke men’s coach Mike Krzyzewski’s all-time record for most coaching wins in NCAA basketball history on Thursday night, as her #8 Cardinal squad defeated Oregon 88-63 at Maples Pavilion.
VanDerveer Matches Legendary Coach K Mark
With the home victory over the Ducks, VanDerveer earned her 1,202nd career coaching win, drawing even with Krzyzewski’s heralded mark that he set last season before retiring.
“It’s really incredible, I’m so thankful,” VanDerveer said after the game. “I never dreamt of this incredible opportunity to coach at Stanford for all these years and coach some of the best players out there. It’s just amazing to be here tonight and tie this record.”
VanDerveer, 70, has spent the past 38 seasons coaching Stanford, leading the Cardinal to two NCAA championships and 12 Final Four appearances. Her teams have won at least 22 games in each of the last 28 seasons.
Stanford Cruises Past Oregon Behind Brink, Jump
Stanford handed Oregon its third straight loss by opening the game on a 20-0 run. The Cardinal never looked back, leading 46-25 at halftime and by as many as 31 points in the second half.
Sophomore forward Cameron Brink and senior guard Hannah Jump led Stanford’s balanced attack. Brink had 16 points and 13 rebounds before leaving late in the third quarter with an apparent leg injury. Jump scored 17 points while knocking down five 3-pointers. Sophomore guard Jzaniya Harriel pitched in a career-high 21 points.
Oregon sophomore Grace VanSlooten scored 20 points in the loss. No other Duck scored in double figures.
The injury to Brink was a scary moment for Stanford. She is the team’s leading scorer and rebounder this season while anchoring the defense. The Cardinal will await MRI results to determine the severity of Brink’s injury.
Pursuit of Wins Record Continues Tuesday
With the historical win over Oregon, VanDerveer is now on the cusp of passing Krzyzewski to become the winningest coach in college basketball at either the men’s or women’s level.
Stanford plays again on Tuesday at Maples Pavilion against rival California. A win would give VanDerveer sole possession of first place on the all-time wins list.
VanDerveer Built Stanford into Powerhouse
VanDerveer has turned Stanford into a perennial national title contender since taking over the program in 1985. She has led the Cardinal to 14 Final Fours and two NCAA championships (1990, 1992), developing stars like Jennifer Azzi, Kate Starbird, Nicole Powell, Candice Wiggins, Nnemkadi Ogwumike, and Chiney Ogwumike along the way.
Her success at Stanford is even more impressive considering the rigorous academic standards that student-athletes must meet to be admitted to the university. VanDerveer’s ability to consistently attract elite talent and mold it into championship-caliber teams has set her apart.
Pursuit of Summit Caps Incredible Career
VanDerveer’s pursuit of the all-time wins record is the latest summit in a long list of incredible career accomplishments:
- 1,202 career wins (soon to be NCAA all-time record)
- 31 NCAA Tournament appearances
- 14 Final Four appearances
- 12 conference coach of the year awards
- 2x NCAA Championship winner (1990, 1992)
- Naismith Hall of Fame inductee (2011)
With over 1,200 victories and counting, VanDerveer has made her mark as one of basketball’s greatest coaches. She now stands alone at the top of her profession after matching the legendary Krzyzewski’s mark on Thursday night.
And at 70 years old, VanDerveer remains driven by the competitive fires that have pushed her to the mountaintop. There is no sign that she plans to slow down any time soon even with the record under her belt.
“I feel young,” she said after the Oregon win. “I love what I do. As long as I feel like I’m being effective and we’re recruiting great players and I’m healthy, why not keep coaching?”
Why not, indeed. VanDerveer’s Cardinal remain a Pac-12 title contender and Final Four threat, buoyed by young talents like Brink, Harriel and junior guard Haley Jones. The wins will continue to pile up with VanDerveer at the helm.
But tonight, the legendary coach takes a moment to celebrate a career achievement for the ages. 1,202 and still counting.
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