Legendary Notre Dame Basketball Coach Muffet McGraw to Step Down

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Legendary Notre Dame women's basketball coach Muffet McGraw is stepping down after 33 years as the team's head coach, McGraw announced in a statement Wednesday. 

"It has been my great honor to represent the University of Notre Dame these past 33 years, but the time has come for me to step down as your head basketball coach," McGraw said. "I want to thank Monk Malloy and Father Jenkins for giving me the opportunity to coach the game I love at a University I love."

"I am proud of what we have accomplished, and I can turn the page to the next chapter in my life with no regrets, knowing I gave it my best every day."

McGraw, a member of the 2017 Naismith Hall of Fame class, went 842-252 in her three decades with the Fighting Irish. 

She made nine Final Four appearances, seven trips to the national title game (including six trips in the past 10 years) and won two national championships. She is one of just five coaches in men's or women's Division I basketball with more than 930 career wins. 

Prior to joining Notre Dame in 1987, McGraw was the head coach at Lehigh and also an assistant coach at Saint Joseph's. 

“It is inevitable and appropriate that as we mark Muffet’s retirement from coaching today, much of the focus will be on the remarkable record of competitive success that makes her a Hall of Fame coach,” Notre Dame director of athletics Jack Swarbrick said in a statement. “But my reflections go more to her as an educator, friend, and role model. Every time I had the privilege of stepping into her classroom, be it at practice or courtside during a game, I was struck by how much she cared about her students and how important it was for her to use basketball as a vehicle to help develop future leaders."

Notre Dame men's basketball coach Mike Brey also voiced his appreciation for McGraw. 

Soon after McGraw's announcement, Notre Dame named former player and assistant coach Niele Ivey as the team's new head coach. Most recently, Ivey spent the past season as an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies. 

Ivey returns to Notre Dame after making two Final Four appearances as a Fighting Irish player and seven Final Four appearances as an assistant coach. She has spent 17 years on Notre Dame’s campus.

The Fighting Irish were just 13-18 in 2019, which marked the worst season of McGraw's tenure.