LOS ANGELES (September 25, 2013) –Stanford University Head Women’s Basketball Coach Tara VanDerveer will receive the John R. Wooden Award’s “Legends of Coaching” honor in 2014, Coach Wooden’s granddaughter, Christy Impelman, announced today at the annual Los Angeles Athletic Club Wooden Award Tipoff Luncheon. The award recognizes coaches who exemplify Coach Wooden’s high standards of coaching success and personal integrity.
The “Legends of Coaching” award was adopted by the Wooden Award Committee in 1999. The honorees are selected based on character, success on the court, graduation rates of student-athletes in their basketball program, coaching philosophy, and identification with the goals of the John R. Wooden Award. The first recipient was Dean Smith of North Carolina. VanDerveer will be recognized, along with the men’s and women’s 2014 John R. Wooden Award winners and the Wooden Award All American teams, at the Los Angeles Athletic Club the weekend of April 11-13, 2014.
“Coach Wooden, always a fan of the women’s game, would have been honored to present this award to Coach VanDerveer,” said Nan Wooden, daughter of John Wooden. “Coach VanDerveer’s coaching record, recognition by her peers, and her athletes’ success in the classroom all speak for themselves.”
VanDerveer led her Stanford teams to five straight Final Fours from 2008-2012, and the Cardinal is the 13- time reigning Pac-12 champion (2001-13), having captured both the regular season and conference tournament titles for the last seven seasons. VanDerveer’s career record in 27 seasons at Stanford is 742-152. Under VanDerveer, Stanford has reached an incredible 25 straight NCAA tournaments, with six consecutive 30-win seasons, 2 NCAA titles (1990 and 1992) and 10 trips to the Final Four. (Note: VanDerveer took a sabbatical in 1995-96, and Stanford reached the Final Four that year as well.)
VanDerveer is a 15-time conference coach of the year (13 Pac-12; 2 Big 10). Prior to Stanford, she spent two years at Idaho, and from 1980-85 at Ohio State, where she led her teams to four 20-win seasons and a top 10 national ranking. Her overall career record stands at 894-203. VanDerveer is six wins away from becoming the fifth women’s coach to win 900 games.
VanDerveer played collegiately at Indiana University, and she is a member of the school’s Hall of Fame. She has also coached at the international level, including guiding the U.S. to the gold medal in the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.
Many of VanDerveer’s assistant coaches and players have gone on to careers as head collegiate coaches and basketball administrators, including Molly Goodenbour (Cal State Dominguez Hills); Charmin Smith and Katy Steding (assistant coaches, Cal); Charli Turner Thorne (Arizona State); Renee Brown (WNBA executive); Bobbie Kelsey (University of Wisconsin) and Jennifer Azzi (USF). VanDerveer’s community involvement started when she was hired by Stanford in 1985; each academic quarter, she has her team select one cause or group in the local community to which it lends support.
VanDerveer is the third women’s coach to receive the Wooden Award Legends of Coaching honor, and the second Stanford coach chosen. Mike Montgomery, now at Cal, was the Legends of Coaching winner while at Stanford in 2004. Kansas and Connecticut are the only two other schools with two Legends of Coaching winners.
The Legends of Coaching Award will be presented at the 38th Annual Wooden Award Gala Celebration, which will take place the weekend of April 11-13, 2014.