Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Winning seasons, superb graduation rates for his players and
a basketball team that is as close as family are all attributes that reflect on
the man who is now in his 33rd season as the head coach of the Blue Devils,
Although some still stumble with pronouncing and spelling
his name, when people speak of the highest level of success in the college
basketball world, the name Krzyzewski (Sha-shef-skee) immediately comes to
mind. Coach K further solidified his status in the upper pantheon of coaching
on Nov. 15, 2011 when he became the winningest coach in college basketball
history with a 74-69 Duke win over Michigan State at Madison Square Garden.
In 32 years at Duke, Krzyzewski, a Hall of Fame coach and
12-time National Coach of the Year, has built a dynasty that few programs in
the history of the game can match.
The numbers under Coach K are staggering:
Four National Championships (1991, 1992, 2001, 2010)
Four gold medals as head coach of USA Men's National Team
927 career wins (most in NCAA history)
854 victories at Duke, including 388 ACC wins
79 NCAA Tournament victories (first all-time)
12 National Coach of the Year honors (eight seasons)
Seven National Players of the Year (nine honors)
Six National Defensive Players of the Year (nine honors)
28 NCAA Tournament bids
25 All-America selections (39 honors)
11 Final Four appearances (T-2nd all-time)
12 ACC regular season championships
13 ACC Tournament championships
486 weeks ranked among the nation's top 25 teams
425 weeks ranked among the nation's top 10 teams
104 weeks ranked No. 1 in the country
45 NBA Draft selections, including 25 in the first round
17 NBA Lottery picks
10 Consecutive Top 10 AP Poll finishes (1997-2006)
Entering the 2012-13 season, Coach K owns a 927-291 record
in 37 years of coaching, including an 854-232 mark in 32 seasons in Durham. He
is already the winningest coach in college basketball history and currently
ranks fourth all-time in wins at one school. Krzyzewski enters the 2012-13
campaign 23 wins shy of Adolph Rupp (Kentucky) for third place on the list.
Krzyzewski's record as Duke's all-time winningest coach
offers evidence of his success, but even more impressive are the four national
championships. The fourth title came in 2010 with a 61-59 win over Butler in
Indianapolis, while he also led Duke to the championship in 2001 and to
back-to-back titles in 1991 and 1992, making him one of only two coaches since
UCLA's John Wooden with such an accomplishment. In 2005-06, Krzyzewski passed
Wooden to move into first on the chart of coaches who have led their respective
schools to a No. 1 national ranking. Coach K has now led Duke to the top spot
in the AP poll in 15 seasons, including 10 of the last 15 years.
He and the Blue Devils have been a fixture on the national
basketball scene with 17 consecutive NCAA Tournament berths from 1996-2012 and
28 in the past 29 years. Overall, he has taken his program to postseason play
in 29 of his 32 years at Duke and is the winningest active coach in NCAA
Tournament play with a stunning 79-24 record for a .767 winning percentage. On
March 20, 2005, Krzyzewski surpassed Dean Smith's career tournament win total
of 65 with a 63-55 triumph over Mississippi State in the second round of the
To top off an incredible year in 2001, after Duke won its
third national championship, Krzyzewski was named to the Naismith Basketball
Hall of Fame class along with Temple's John Chaney and former NBA star Moses
Malone. The induction ceremony was held in Springfield, Mass., on October 5,
2001. In typical Coach K fashion, he was adamant in sharing the honor with
those around him.
"I hope that all of those youngsters who have played for me
and the people who have worked with me will share in this honor," he said. "My
mom always told me to associate myself with great people and great institutions.
I've tried to do that at the United States Military Academy and at Duke
University, two of the great institutions in the world. As a result, I've been
around some amazing people.
"I never thought I'd be worthy enough to be in the
Basketball Hall of Fame. It's not anything you set out trying to achieve.
Basically, you go about your business and try to be as good as you can be all
the time. Again, I get back to coaching great players and being with great
assistants. They bring out the best in you."
Success stories do not just happen overnight. They take
time, and the latest chapter in Duke basketball is no exception. Krzyzewski
inherited a Duke squad in 1980-81 with a thin talent base outside of
All-America Gene Banks, Kenny Dennard and Vince Taylor. The squad hustled its
way to a bid in the NIT, but it was obvious that the recruiting trail was
Krzyzewski's only answer if the team was to succeed in the long run.
He landed a recruiting class in 1982 made up of Johnny
Dawkins, Mark Alarie, David Henderson, Jay Bilas and Weldon Williams. It was
rated one of the nation's best and put Duke on the map to stay.
Joining that powerful group was guard Tommy Amaker in 1983.
Duke won 24 games with that nucleus in 1984 and earned the first NCAA bid under
With the class of Dawkins, Alarie and company now seniors,
the 1986 Duke Blue Devils won a then NCAA-record 37 games while claiming Big
Apple NIT, ACC regular season, ACC Tournament and NCAA East Regional titles.
They established a school record with a 21-game winning streak during the year
(that has since been broken), were undefeated at home, advanced to the NCAA
Championship game in Dallas and played more games (40) than any other team in
college basketball history.
With the loss of the five seniors, many expected Duke to
drop considerably in 1987, but not Krzyzewski. The team won 24 games and
advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament before losing to eventual
national champion Indiana. Amaker ended his career as the National Defensive
Player of the Year, closing out a season that Coach K looks back on as the one
that demonstrated the winning consistency of the program.
The 1987-88 campaign began Duke's amazing streak of five
straight NCAA Final Four appearances as the Blue Devils won 28 games, again
swept to the ACC title, won another East Regional championship and found
themselves in Kansas City. Senior Billy King followed Amaker by winning the
second straight National Defensive Player of the Year award by a Blue Devil.
The role of leadership again fell to the senior class in
1988-89. This time, it was the National Player of the Year Danny Ferry, Quin
Snyder and John Smith taking the reins. They guided the team to another trip to
the NCAA Final Four with a win over heavily favored Georgetown in the East
In 1989-90, seniors Alaa Abdelnaby, Robert Brickey and Phil
Henderson led the way to the Final Four with a 29-9 record, landing just one
game shy of the title in Denver. The group won its third consecutive East Regional
championship with an overtime triumph over top-seeded Connecticut.
Then came 1990-91, a season that forever changed the face of
basketball at Duke. After the 30-point loss to UNLV in the 1990 final,
Krzyzewski's team was determined to avenge the loss. The Blue Devils won the
regular season ACC title and posted four consecutive lopsided victories in the
Midwest Region for yet another trip to the Final Four.
In the semifinals, Duke got another shot at the Runnin'
Rebels, who were undefeated, and this time Coach K masterfully led the Blue
Devils to a 79-77 victory to earn a matchup with Kansas for the title. Duke's
crowning glory came on April 1, 1991, with a 72-65 victory over the Jayhawks as
Christian Laettner earned MVP honors in Duke's first national basketball
In 1992, the stage was set for an unprecedented chapter in
college basketball history, and Coach K and his squad were up to the task.
Behind National Player of the Year Christian Laettner and fellow All-Americans
Bobby Hurley and Grant Hill, the Blue Devils rolled to a 34-2 record and held
the No. 1 ranking from start to finish (18 polls). Duke won its second
consecutive NCAA crown with a 71-51 victory over Michigan. Along the way, the
Blue Devils captured their fifth consecutive regional championship, won the ACC
regular season and tournament titles and equaled the school record to that
point for ACC victories with 14.
In 1993-94, the Blue Devils and Coach K were back knocking
at the door of another national championship. Duke piled up a 28-6 overall
record, won the ACC regular season championship, was ranked from start to
finish in the nation's top 10, captured the Southeast Regional title with an
upset win over top-seeded Purdue and advanced to the national championship game
before bowing to Arkansas, 76-72, in Charlotte.
The Blue Devils finished the 1998-99 campaign equaling the
Duke record for most wins with 37, winning the NCAA East Regional title,
capturing the ACC Tournament crown for the first time since 1992, recording the
first 16-0 record in the ACC regular season, securing a school-record 32-game
winning streak during the year and wrapping it all up as the NCAA runner-ups.
Elton Brand was the consensus National Player of the Year, Shane Battier was
the NABC National Defensive Player of the Year and Trajan Langdon was a first
team All-America for Duke.
In 1999-2000, Duke finished with a 29-5 record, its fourth
consecutive outright ACC regular season championship with a 15-1 record, its
second consecutive ACC Tournament title and the final regular season No. 1
ranking in both major polls. Senior Chris Carrawell and junior Shane Battier
were named consensus All-Americans, and Battier earned his second consecutive
National Defensive Player of the Year award. The Blue Devils accomplished this
despite losing four starters from their 37-2 squad that advanced to the
national championship game in 1999. Duke also had seven freshmen, the most on a
Blue Devil team in school history, on its roster.
On November 17, 2000, Krzyzewski's numerous accomplishments
at Duke were recognized as the fabled Cameron Indoor Stadium court was named
Coach K Court in his honor in a postgame ceremony.
Continuing to build on his well-earned reputation as one of
the top college basketball coaches of all time, Coach K led Duke to its third
national championship in 2001, joining just three other coaches - Wooden (10),
Adolph Rupp (4) and Bob Knight (3) - who have won three or more NCAA titles.
The Blue Devils finished the season with a 35-4 record, including 10
consecutive victories to end the year, their third consecutive ACC Tournament
championship, fifth straight ACC regular season championship and the TiVo
Preseason NIT title. Duke also was ranked at the top of the final Associated
Press poll for the third consecutive season, marking just the second time in
NCAA history a program had accomplished that feat (Wooden's UCLA squads did it
With its 82-72 victory over Arizona in the 2001 national
championship game, Duke ended a four-year run with 133 victories. The Blue
Devils lost just 15 games during that four-year span. The 133 wins broke the
previous NCAA standard of 132 set twice by Kentucky from 1995-98 and 1996-99.
In fact, 10 of the best 35 four-year runs in college history belong to Coach
K-led Duke teams.
Individually, Coach K passed two major milestones in
2000-01: his 500th victory at Duke (98-85 over Villanova) and his 600th win
overall (79-53 over sixth-ranked North Carolina in the ACC Tournament final).
He reached 600 career wins faster than all but 10 coaches in college history.
Under Krzyzewski's guidance, not one, but two of his
student-athletes earned National Player of the Year awards in 2001 (Shane
Battier was the consensus selection, while Jason Williams earned the NABC
award). It was the first time in college basketball history that two players
from the same team received National Player of the Year recognition by the
major outlets. Battier and Williams were both unanimous first team
All-Americans, and Battier, the sixth overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft,
earned his third consecutive National Defensive Player of the Year award.
"I thoroughly loved coaching these kids," said Krzyzewski
following the 2001 national title. "They've been so good. They've given me
their hearts, their minds, and not only that, they've given it to each other
... I get real close to the guys on my team. That's the most rewarding thing
about what I do."
Krzyzewski led Duke to another outstanding season in
2001-02. The Blue Devils finished 31-4
overall, won the ACC Tournament title for a record fourth consecutive year,
were a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament for a record fifth straight season and
finished No. 1 in the final AP poll for the fourth consecutive season, another
NCAA first. Three Duke players - Jason Williams, Mike Dunleavy and Carlos
Boozer - earned All-America honors and Williams became just the seventh repeat
winner of National Player of the Year honors in college basketball history.
That Duke threesome also departed for the NBA, where all three were drafted.
Williams and Dunleavy were selected second and third, respectively, making them
just the second set of teammates to be taken among the top three picks of the
NBA Draft (UCLA's Lew Alcindor and Lucious Allen went one and three in 1969).
In perhaps one of his finest coaching jobs, Krzyzewski led
his 2002-03 team, featuring six freshmen to a 26-7 record, its record fifth
consecutive ACC Tournament championship and the school's sixth consecutive
appearance in the NCAA Sweet 16. Senior Dahntay Jones, the squad's leading
scorer, was Duke's lone All-ACC representative and an honorable mention
All-America selection. Jones became Coach K's 17th first round pick in the 2003
Guided by the leadership of senior point guard Chris Duhon,
Duke returned to the Final Four for the 10th time in a 19-year period in
2003-04. Duke finished the season 31-6 and won its sixth ACC regular season
crown in eight seasons with a 13-3 league mark. Duke reached the No. 1 national
ranking for four weeks during the season, marking the seventh consecutive year
that it had reached that height (only UCLA's streak of 12 straight years of
achieving the No. 1 ranking from 1964-75 is longer). The Blue Devils ended the
year by dropping a one-point decision to eventual national champion Connecticut
in the Final Four in San Antonio. Duhon, J.J. Redick and Shelden Williams each
earned All-America honors, bringing Coach K's total selections to 19 in 24
seasons. In the 2004 NBA Draft, Luol Deng, after playing just one season at
Duke, was selected seventh overall and Duhon was taken in the second round.
The 2004-05 squad featured Daniel Ewing, who would become
the 36th NBA Draft pick under Krzyzewski, Redick, a National Player of the Year
choice, and Williams, the National Defensive Player of the Year honoree. The Blue Devils went 27-6 and captured the
ACC Tournament championship.
In 2005-06, the Blue Devils posted a 32-4 record, including
a 14-2 mark in regular season league play. Duke captured the NIT Season Tip-Off
crown and went on to win both the ACC regular season and tournament titles.
Krzyzewski's 10th ACC Tournament championship came in the 1,000th game of his
coaching career, a 78-76 win over Boston College at the Greensboro Coliseum on
March 12. Redick, a consensus National Player of the Year honoree, set the ACC
career scoring and the NCAA three-point field goal records and Williams grabbed
National Defensive Player of the Year honors for the second year in a row.
Redick and Williams also became the ninth set of teammates selected as AP first
team All-Americans and the first since Jason Williams and Shane Battier
accomplished the feat in 2001.
Duke featured the school's youngest team in more than 60
years in the 2006-07 season with 10 of the 12 players on the roster being
either freshmen or sophomores. Despite the youth, the squad recorded a 22-11
record and reached the NCAA Tournament. Coach K recorded his 700th career
victory at Duke against Georgia Tech, making him the second-fastest coach in NCAA
history to record 700 wins at one school.
Coach K had the Blue Devils among the top teams in the
nation during the 2007-08 campaign as the team won 22 of its first 23 games.
Krzyzewski became only the sixth head coach to reach 800 career wins with a
victory at N.C. State. Duke would go on to finish the year 28-6, reaching the
NCAA Tournament for the 13th consecutive season. DeMarcus Nelson was named the
ACC Defensive Player of the Year and a third team All-American, while Kyle
Singler was the ACC Rookie of the Year and a Freshman All-American.
In 2008-09, Coach K led Duke to a 30-7 record, the school's
10th 30-win season, and to the ACC Tournament championship. The Blue Devils
advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 and reached a No. 1 ranking in the middle of the
season. Gerald Henderson was a first team All-ACC performer while the team
featured four players with over 1,000 career points in Henderson, Greg Paulus,
Jon Scheyer and Kyle Singler.
The 2010 National Championship team used a stingy defense,
hard-nosed rebounding and a potent three-man scoring attack to finish the year
35-5 overall. The Blue Devils held opponents to 61.0 points per game, the
second-lowest in school history, and averaged 39.0 rebounds per contests for
the second-most during Krzyzewski's tenure at Duke. The Blue Devils also featured
the nation's top scoring trio as Scheyer, Singler and Nolan Smith combined to
average 53.3 points per game. Duke won every possible championship they
competed for in 2009-10, winning the NIT Season Tip-Off, ACC regular season and
ACC Tournament on the way to reaching the NCAA Final Four for the 11th time
In 2010-11, Krzyzewski led the Blue Devils to a 32-5 record,
the ACC Tournament championship and the CBE Classic title. The Blue Devils
spent 11 weeks atop the AP Poll and were ranked in the top 5 of the AP and USA
Today/ESPN Coaches Polls for the entire season. Nolan Smith became the seventh
player under Coach K to average over 20.0 points per game and was a unanimous
first team All-America selection and the ACC Player of the Year. Singler also
capped off his record setting career with All-ACC and All-America accolades in
2011. Krzyzewski, the 2011 NABC District II Coach of the Year, became the
second coach in NCAA history to post 900 career wins with a 73-71 win over
Michigan on March 20 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Krzyzewski guided a young 2011-12 team to a 27-7 record,
including a 13-3 ledger in league play. Duke spent the entire season ranked in
the top 10 of the AP poll and collected 10 wins over NCAA Tournament teams. The
Blue Devils posted a 74-69 win over Michigan State at Madison Square Garden on
Nov. 15 to give Coach K his NCAA-best 903rd career coaching victory. Duke also
ran the table at the Maui Invitational, including a championship game win over
2012 NCAA Tournament runner-up Kansas, to improve to 16-0 all-time in the
event. The Blue Devils registered a buzzer-beating win at North Carolina and
erased a 20-point deficit with 11 minutes to play in a dramatic
come-from-behind win over N.C. State in 2012. Rivers garnered third team NABC
All-America and ACC Rookie of the Year honors, while averaging a team-high 15.5
points per game. He also became just the seventh freshman in league history to
earn first team All-ACC honors. Juniors Mason Plumlee and Seth Curry were third
team all-conference picks, while Plumlee also earned CoSIDA first team Academic
On the court, Coach K has averaged more than 25 wins a
season during his career at Duke and posted 12 30-win seasons, including 30 or
more victories in nine of the last 15 years. Krzyzewski's 12 30-win seasons are
the most by any coach in college basketball history.
He has directed his teams to 11 Final Fours, tied for
second-most by any coach in NCAA history. Since 1985, Krzyzewski has an
NCAA-record 79 NCAA Tournament victories, 18 more than the next-closest active
coach (North Carolina's Roy Williams has 61 NCAA wins during this period). From
1986 to 2012, every Duke class except three (1998, 2008 and 2009) has played in
at least one Final Four. Incredibly, 67 of 75 players who have completed four
years of eligibility at Duke since 1986 have played in the Final Four, with 62
of those players having played in at least one NCAA Championship game.
Obviously, Coach K has put a recruiting plan in motion that
attracts the nation's best players each year. Six members of this year's Duke
team earned McDonald's All-America accolades as prep stars, including freshmen
Amile Jefferson and Rasheed Sulaimon. Joining the rookies are Quinn Cook, Ryan
Kelly, Marshall Plumlee and Mason Plumlee.
"There was no magic wand," said Krzyzewski. "It was a matter
of hard work and organization and a little bit of luck. We had a plan and we
stuck to it. In many ways it may have been better that there wasn't an abundance
of talent when we arrived. If that had been the case, we may have taken certain
things for granted instead of building a solid foundation.
"When things got tough, I always remembered something Vic
Bubas told me just after I had come to Duke," recalled Krzyzewski. "He said,
'When you are building something that is going to be really strong, it takes
time.' That gave me encouragement."
Although he has earned nearly every award imaginable,
Krzyzewski was rewarded with the ultimate honor in basketball in 2001 when he
was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. He entered the
Hall of Fame with Temple coach John Chaney and former NBA star Moses Malone.
Krzyzewski was honored in December of 2011 as Sportsman of
the Year by Sports Illustrated. He shared the SI cover with Tennessee coaching
legend Pat Summitt.
On September 11, 2009, Krzyzewski was inducted into the Army
Sports Hall of Fame. A special plaque unveiling ceremony was held in the Kenna
Hall of Army Sports inside Kimsey Center.
TIME magazine and CNN named Krzyzewski "America's Best
Coach" in 2001 as part of a joint venture between the two media outlets. The
criteria for the selection was not limited to any sport or any level of play.
"No college hoops coach has won more in the past two
decades," wrote Josh Tyrangiel of TIME, "and Krzyzewski has accomplished all
this with a program that turns out real-deal scholar athletes - kids who go to
class, graduate and don't mind telling everyone about it."
In all, Coach K has been named the National Coach of the
Year 12 times in eight different seasons by major organizations, including UPI
and Chevrolet (1986), Naismith (1989), the NABC (1991), The Sporting News and Naismith (1992), Basketball Times (1997),
the NABC and Naismith (1999), Chevrolet (2000) and the Victor Awards (2001). In
2004, he was named the Claire Bee Coach of the Year that honors the active
Division I men's basketball coach who has made the most significant positive
contribution to his sport during the preceding year.
In 1992, The Sporting News named him the Sportsman of the
Year, becoming the first college coach to win the honor. The magazine said, "On
the court and off, Krzyzewski is a family man first, a teacher second, a
basketball coach third, and a winner at all three. He is what's right about
Coach K has been voted the ACC Coach of the Year five times,
most recently in 2000. His five ACC Coach of the Year awards are second
all-time among the coaching giants of the league. In celebration of the
league's 50th anniversary in 2002-03, the Raleigh News and Observer named
Krzyzewski the best coach in ACC history.
His players know how special their coach, mentor and friend
"I played for the greatest college coach of all-time," said
Shane Battier, one of the most decorated players in the history of the game.
"It was an amazing journey."
Two-time National Player of the Year Jason Williams echoed
Battier's sentiments: "It's a dream to play for a guy like that - a guy who's
just a rock, who believes in you every second you're on the court. I love Coach
K. I'd run through a brick wall for him."
In 2005, Krzyzewski became the youngest recipient of the
Distinguished Graduate Award at the United States Military Academy.
Krzyzewski has also been named the USA Basketball Coach of
the Year in 2006, 2007 and 2009.
Coach K and USA Basketball
Krzyzewski has been a prominent figure on the USA Basketball
scene throughout his career. On Oct. 26, 2005, his role on the international
basketball world was thrust into the limelight when he was named head coach of
the USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team.
Over the next five international events, spanning seven
years, Coach K and Team USA amassed an extraordinary 62-1 record en route to
winning gold medals at the 2007 FIBA
Americas Championship, 2008 Beijing Olympics, 2010 FIBA World
Championship and the 2012 London Olympics as well as a bronze medal at the 2006
FIBA World Championship.
Coach K helped USA Basketball regain its position in international
basketball during his first stint as the national team coach (2005-08) by
instilling the same team-first principles he utilizes as the foundation for
success at Duke.
In his first competition as head coach of the program,
Krzyzewski led a team that included former Duke standouts Elton Brand and Shane
Battier to an 8-1 record and a bronze medal finish at the 2006 FIBA World
Championship in Japan.
The following summer, Coach K led the USA squad to a gold
medal in the 2007 FIBA Americas Championship, posting a 10-0 record and winning
by an average of 39.5 points per game. They defeated Argentina 118-81 in the
gold medal game to automatically qualify for the 2008 Olympics.
In the summer of 2008, Krzyzewski guided the USA squad to a
gold medal at the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing. Team USA reclaimed Olympic
gold with a 118-107 victory over Spain in the championship game, while also
further changing a negative perception of basketball in the United States along
the way. Team USA averaged 106 points per game with average margin of victory
of 27.9 points per game during their gold medal run and also restored a
tarnished image by winning over fans and fellow athletes with its presence off
the court in Beijing. While earning praise for its unselfish play on the court,
members of Team USA were equally admired for their patriotic support of fellow
Americans in their quests for Olympic gold.
"It has been tagged as the most selfish basketball nation on
Earth, but the U.S. showed teamwork and intensity normally not seen at any
place other than, say, Duke University," said Los Angeles Times columnist Bill
Plaschke during Team USA's gold medal run in 2008.
On July 21, 2009, it was announced that Krzyzewski would
return as the head coach of the USA Basketball Senior National Team.
"When you have a good thing going you don't mess with it.
Mike and the staff did an incredible job last quad and he is more than entitled
to have another run at it. I've said it over and over, he was the right guy at
the right time and that is still true," said Jerry Colangelo, who served as the
Managing Director of the USA Basketball Men's National Team program, at the
time of the announcement.
Krzyzewski's second term as the national team coach began
with a gold medal performance at the 2010 FIBA World Championship in Istanbul,
Turkey. With a group that featured six players under the age of 22, Team USA
posted a 9-0 mark to capture the gold medal in the FIBA World Championship for
the first time since 1994. The U.S. squad had a +24.9 points per game scoring
margin with double digit wins in eight of nine contests.
Team USA once again claimed Olympic gold in 2012 in London,
posting a 107-100 win over Spain. While some experts speculated that outside
shooting could be the downfall of the 2012 squad, Coach K and his staff gave
the players the confidence to take their open shots against the international
team's zone defenses. The group, led by Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony,
responded by setting an Olympic record with 129 three-point field goals (16.1
3pg.) and shooting 44.0 percent from three-point range during the tournament.
Team USA's finest shooting performance came in a 156-73 win over Nigeria in
pool play. Krzyzewski's group set Olympic records for three-pointers (29,
including 10 from Anthony), three-point percentage (.630) and points scored
(156) in the win.
Krzyzewski closed out his tenure in charge of the USA Men's
Senior National Team with a 50-game win streak, while becoming the first U.S.
coach of multiple Olympic teams since the legendary Henry Iba, who won gold in
1964 and 1968 and coached the team that lost the controversial 1972 gold-medal
game to the Soviet Union.
Duke players have also had a prominent impact in the
Olympics as eight of Krzyzewski's former players have competed for five
different countries in the Olympics. In 2012, former Blue Devils Luol Deng
(Great Britain) and Martynas Pocius (Lithuania) competed in the London
Krzyzewski supports his players' efforts to participate in
international basketball with over 100 former Duke players competing in
international tournaments, including seven current players who have competed
for their country at various international events.
Shelden Williams, who
led the U.S. team to an 8-0 record and a gold medal at the World University
Games in Turkey in 2005, was named the USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year.
In 2001, Chris Duhon earned the same honor after leading the World Championship
for Young Men Team to the gold medal in Japan.
Krzyzewski has always been an active part of USA Basketball
in various roles, serving as past chairman of the Player Selection Committee
for all of the United States' teams, including the 1991 Pan Am and 1992 Olympic
teams. Coach K was an assistant to Chuck Daly (a former Duke assistant coach)
at the Olympics and won the gold medal in Barcelona with the "Dream Team."
Christian Laettner was a member of that team, while 1994 graduate Grant Hill
was a part of "Dream Team II" in Atlanta.
Coach K was the USA head coach in 1990 when he led the
Americans to a bronze medal at the World Championships and a silver medal at
the Goodwill Games in Seattle. He also paced Team USA to a silver medal at the
1987 World University Games and was a special assistant to Bob Knight at the
1984 Olympics. In addition, he has had previous coaching duties at the National
Sports Festival (gold medal in 1983) and Pan Am Games.
The Coaching Tree
Sustained success under Mike Krzyzewski has presented
coaching opportunities for several of his former players and assistant coaches
from both Army and Duke. In all, 25 of Coach K's former players or assistants
are coaching in the collegiate or professional ranks, including three
collegiate head coaches Tommy Amaker (Harvard), Mike Brey (Notre Dame) and
Johnny Dawkins (Stanford).
Krzyzewski has had 10 former players spend a portion of
their coaching careers as members of the Duke staff, including his entire staff
for the 2012-13 season. Four former players (associate head coaches Steve
Wojciechowski and Chris Collins; assistant coach Jeff Capel; special assistant
Nate James) comprise Krzyzewski's current staff at Duke.
Success On and Off the Court
When Coach K came to Duke in the spring of 1980, he found a
program that was searching for strong leadership and a rebirth of the success
that Blue Devil fans had come to know and love. As he enters his 33rd season at
the helm, the numbers more than prove the faith that former athletic director
Tom Butters put in the young, unproven coach to assemble a basketball program
consistently ranking in the upper echelon of the country.
Krzyzewski runs a quality program from top to bottom, from
the players he recruits to the performance of his teams on the floor, year in
and year out.
"I want Duke basketball to be good on a continuing basis,"
said Krzyzewski. "All along it has been my goal to give Duke a program that
will last, one that will be nationally ranked and worthy of postseason play
No words can better describe the basketball program he has
established at Duke University. Krzyzewski has led his Blue Devils to
overwhelming success while building a program that will continue to flourish in
the years to come.
The term "student-athlete" is used over and over in college
athletics, but the Duke basketball team truly exemplifies the ideal. During
Krzyzewski's time with the Blue Devils, all but two Duke players who played
four seasons have graduated.
Krzyzewski has had five different players collect a total of
seven CoSIDA Academic All-America accolades, including Mason Plumlee garnering
first team honors in 2012. Plumlee will look to join Shane Battier, Mike
Gminski and Jim Spanarkel as two-time
first team Academic All-America selections.
Prior to Duke
Krzyzewski's teams take nothing for granted on the court.
The core of their success is pressure man-to-man defense, developed over the
years with hard work in practice, commitment to excellence and attention to
detail. Coach K's players believe in their system and know that when they win,
it is largely because of excellent team defense.
His disciplined, mentally tough teams could be seen as an
outgrowth of Coach K's own upbringing. He went to West Point, to enroll in the
U.S. Military Academy and receive a quality education, play basketball and
become an officer in the Army.
From 1969-74, Krzyzewski served his country. He directed
service teams for three years and then followed that up with two years as head
coach of the U.S. Military Academy Prep School in Belvoir, Va.
In 1974, he resigned from the Army having attained the rank
of Captain. When Krzyzewski was just 26, Bob Knight, his former coach at Army,
called and offered him a graduate assistant slot at Indiana University. That
1975 squad posted an 18-0 Big Ten mark and a 31-1 record.
Prior to joining the Duke program, Krzyzewski spent five
years building the program at his alma mater in West Point. He led the Cadets
to one NIT berth, one ECAC playoff appearance and a five-year record of 73-59.
Krzyzewski is heavily involved in community service,
including being a current chairman of the Duke Children's Miracle Network
Telethon and assuming vital roles at the Duke Children's Classic, the Jimmy V
Foundation for Cancer Research and the NABC Foundation.
In 2000, he was named the first recipient of the GTE Reads
with the NABC Literacy Champion Award. In honor of Krzyzewski's selection, GTE
(now Verizon) donated $10,000 to support Duke Athletics' literacy program,
Verizon Read with the Blue Devils.
Coach K's charitable activities also include the
establishment and funding of the Emily Krzyzewski Center, a community center in
Durham named after his mother. The Center's mission is to inspire economically
disadvantaged students to dream big, act with character and purpose, strive for
academic excellence, and reach their highest potential as future citizen
leaders. In 2002, several of Duke's former basketball stars, including Grant
Hill, Christian Laettner, Shane Battier, Mike Dunleavy and Danny Ferry, returned
to campus for the Duke All-Star Charity Hoopla. The game and surrounding events
helped raise significant funds for the Duke/Durham Neighborhood Partnership and
the Emily K Center. In 2003, Krzyzewski launched the K Academy, a summer
fantasy camp to assist with several Duke basketball projects, including the
scholarship endowment fund.
In 2012, Krzyzewski was honored with the USBWA Wayman
Tisdale Humanitarian Award. The Humanitarian Award honors an individual
involved in college basketball who has made a significantly positive impact on
Krzyzewski and his entire family, wife Mickie and daughters
Debbie, Lindy and Jamie, have been involved in campaigns to stay in school and
against alcohol, drug abuse and drunk driving.
Coach K and the Duke Community
The students at the university are also an important part of
Coach K's life. He appreciates their support and often finds a way to include
the students, especially those camped out in Krzyzewskiville, a tent community
erected each season outside of Cameron Indoor Stadium for students wanting to
get a head start on securing entrance to games. He has been known to treat the
fans camping out for days, or even weeks, to a pregame strategy session in
Cameron or to buy them pizzas while they wait in line. He knows that the unique
relationship between his team and the student body is what makes Duke special.
The "Cameron Crazies" are regarded as some of the best fans in all of sports.
The university also recognized his vital role on campus,
awarding him Duke's highest honor - the Medal of Honor - at the University
Founders' Day Convocation in 1997.
In September 2001, Krzyzewski and his wife Mickie created
the Krzyzewski Family Scholarship Endowment for Duke students from the
Carolinas. The $100,000 scholarship, the result of the Krzyzewskis' gift and
additional funds from The Duke Endowment of Charlotte, will provide assistance
to undergraduates from North and South Carolina.
"Mickie and Mike Krzyzewski both do so much for our
university," said former Duke President Nan Keohane following the gift. "Their
many contributions to our athletic program are well known, and their support of
undergraduate academic and residential life at Duke should be, as well."
During the fall of 2002, Coach K received an Honorary
Alumnus Award from the Duke Medical Center for his contributions to the Duke
Children's Health Center. Krzyzewski and his family have made the center a
focal point in their efforts to raise the standard of clinical care for
Coach K: Author
Add another piece to Krzyzewski's already impressive
resume - best-selling author. Coach K
has co-authored two books with Texas writer Don Phillips published by Warner
Books. "Leading with the Heart," emphasizing Krzyzewski's successful strategies
for basketball, business and life, was released in 2000. It reached the New
York Times best-seller list.
The story of Duke's 2001 national championship season,
"Five-Point Play," was released in the fall of 2001. The book relives Duke's
journey toward the 2001 NCAA title, the school's third in an 11-year span.
Krzyzewski also co-wrote a book with Duke Sports Hall of
Famer Bill Brill entitled "A Season is a Lifetime" following the 1992 national
Following the 2008 Olympics, Krzyzewski and his daughter
Jamie K. Spatola co-authored their second book together, titled "THE GOLD
STANDARD: Building a World-Class Team." The book was released on April 6, 2009
and featured Coach K's guide to team building, illustrated with experiences
from his three years coaching the team that would ultimately win Olympic gold.
Krzyzewski and his daughter Jamie also wrote "Beyond
Basketball: Coach K's Keywords For Success,"
which was released in October, 2006.