Tara VanDerveer becomes winningest women’s college basketball coach

FAN Editor

Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer won her 1,099th game Tuesday as the Cardinal defeated Pacific 104-61, passing the late Pat Summitt for the most coaching victories in women’s college basketball. “I really hope Pat Summitt is looking down and saying, ‘Great job Tara, keep it going,'” VanDerveer said after the historic victory.

VanDerveer, who began her coaching career at Idaho before taking over and spending five seasons at Ohio State, is in her 35th season at the helm for Stanford. During her time there, VanDerveer has been nothing short of remarkable.

Following her first two seasons, in which she went 27-29, she has led Stanford to 32 consecutive winning seasons and 32 consecutive NCAA Tournament berths.

VanDerveer has won at least 20 games in 30 seasons while reaching the 30-win mark 15 times. She has led the Cardinal to 12 Final Four appearances and won the national championship in 1990 and 1992.

Pacific v Stanford
Head coach Tara VanDerveer of the Stanford Cardinal is congratulated by her team after she set the record for the most victories in Division I women’s college basketball, with 1,099, during a game between Stanford and Pacific at Alex G. Spanos Center on December 15, 2020 in Stockton, California. Getty Images

While she has done a lot of winning in the college ranks, VanDerveer also led the 1996 USA Women’s Basketball team to the gold medal. 

When talking about some of the great college basketball coaches of all-time, VanDerveer should be one of the first to come to mind. Not known for being overly active on the sidelines, she is known for being one of the best teachers of the game there is. 

Words of support and admiration poured in on Twitter following Stanford’s victory.

While the COVID-19 pandemic has taken over almost every aspect of our lives and has wreaked havoc on the early parts of the college basketball season, it should not take away the opportunity to recognize, respect and admire one of college basketball’s greatest achievements, for one of the game’s most respected and loved people. 

No. 1 Stanford did just that Tuesday, improving to 5-0 this season by beating Pacific.

This season’s Cardinal are a really deep, confident and talented team and that stems from VanDerveer. With Stanford starting the season off undefeated, and sitting at No. 1 in the AP Top 25 poll and No. 2 in our CBS Sports Power Rankings, Stanford is positioned to compete for a Pac 12 Championship and for another deep NCAA Tournament run. The Cardinal are loaded with talent and may be the deepest team in the country. 

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report

This story first appeared on CBSSports. com

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