LOS ANGELES (October 11, 2016) – Muffet McGraw, University of Notre Dame Women’s Basketball Coach, will receive the John R. Wooden Award’s “Legends of Coaching” honor in 2017. Coach Wooden’s great grandson, John Impleman, was proud to announce his selection at the Los Angeles Athletic Club’s annual Wooden Award Tip-Off Luncheon. The luncheon features the head coaches from the Division I men’s basketball programs in Southern California. The “Legends of Coaching” honor recognizes coaches who exemplify Coach Wooden’s high standard of coaching success and personal integrity.
The “Legends of Coaching” award was adopted by the Wooden Award Steering Committee in 1999. The honorees are selected based on character, success on the court, graduation rate of student-athletes in their basketball program, coaching philosophy, and identification with the goals of the John R. Wooden Award. Coach McGraw will be recognized during the Wooden Award Weekend April 6-8, 2017, as a part of the Los Angeles Athletic Club’s celebration of the greatest players and coaches in college basketball. She will be awarded the honor at the 3rd Annual ESPN College Basketball Awards on April 7, 2017.
Coach McGraw has 34 years of head coaching experience, including 29 years as the head coach of the University of Notre Dame women’s basketball program. She is a three-time National Coach of the Year and a seven-time conference Coach of the Year, most recently collecting her second ACC Coach of the Year trophy in 2016. Elected to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2001, McGraw was one of 14 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2016.
Winning a national championship in 2001, McGraw is one of seven active Division I coaches to guide her team to an NCAA title. She has led Notre Dame to the NCAA Division I national championship game five times, including four of the past five title games, and is one of two active Division I coaches with at least five appearances in the NCAA title game. She is one of three active Division I coaches to lead her team to seven Women’s Final Four appearances. McGraw is also one of five coaches (men’s or women’s basketball) with 800 wins, seven Final Fours and five NCAA title games.
"It's humbling to receive an award like this, particularly one which factors in Coach Wooden's collegiate ideals off the court as well as on the court. It really is a credit to all of the great student-athletes and assistant coaches I have been lucky enough to work with during my career. I am grateful for this honor and to be included with these legends of college coaching."
Success for McGraw has also meant coaching great student-athletes. Notre Dame has had a perfect 100-percent NCAA Graduation Success Rate (GSR) score in seven of the past eight years and is one of four programs to record a perfect GSR score and go on to play for the national title later that same season. During her illustrious career at Notre Dame, McGraw has coached 18 players that have earned All-American honors, including three Wooden Award All-Americans.