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30 reasons why Duke's Coach K is so legendary

Duke Men's Basketball Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski is hanging up his coaching whistle after more than 40 years but here's what makes him so legendary.

DURHAM, N.C. — It will soon be the end of an era for Duke Basketball and legendary head coach Mike Krzyzewski.

Coach K is retiring after a phenomenal career. The university named associate head coach Jon Scheyer as Krzyzewski’s successor for the 2022-23 season.

RELATED: 10 things to know about Coach K’s final home game as Duke takes on UNC

Krzyzewski was born in Chicago, Illinois. He attended Weber High School and then Army West Point where he was a three-year letterman from 1967-69. He was also an Army officer and later resigned as captain in 1974. He then held a number of coaching jobs before becoming head coach at Duke University in 1980.

RELATED: Coach K: Beyond the Court | Watch Friday at 5:30 p.m. on WFMY News 2

Here’s a look back at what makes Coach K so legendary.

(Stats from 2021)

  1. Led Duke to five national championships in 1991, 1992, 2001, 2010 and 2015
  2. Went 88-1 with six gold medals as the head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team, including 24-0 in the Olympics with Olympic gold medals in 2008, 2012 and 2016
  3. Eight-time National Coach of the Year – a total of 12 honors
  4. Coached Duke to the Final Four 12 times -- tied for most in NCAA history
  5. Won 12 ACC regular-season championships
  6. Won 15 ACC Tournament championships – an ACC record
  7. Five-time ACC Coach of the Year and five-time NABC District Coach of the Year
  8. Achieved a final AP No. 1 ranking eight times -- more than double the next best team in the Coach K era.
  9. Has spent 126 weeks ranked No. 1 in the AP poll, 556 weeks ranked in the top 10 of the AP poll and 649 weeks ranked in the top 25 AP poll – each of those figures are the most by a coach in poll history
  10. Has won 67 ACC Tournament games -- the most in league history
  11. His 97 NCAA Tournament wins and 35 NCAA Tournament appearances each stand as NCAA records
  12. Duke's eight No. 1 seeds under Coach K are the most by a coach in NCAA Tournament history
  13. He has more 20-win seasons (36) and 30-win seasons (15) than any coach in NCAA history
  14. Has coached 37 All-America selections to a total of 51 honors – the most by any active coach
  15. Under Krzyzewski, nine Duke players have earned 11 National Player of the Year honors – the most by an active coach
  16. The Krzyzewski era has produced six Blue Devils to earn nine National Defensive Player of the Year honors – more than double the next closest team in college basketball
  17. Has coached 28 NBA Lottery picks – the most in Draft history – and a total of 67 NBA Draft selections, including 41 first-round picks
  18. His 1,170 career wins are most in NCAA history, while his 1,097 victories at Duke are the most in NCAA history at one school and his 517 ACC wins are the most in league history
  19. Served as the President of the National Basketball Coaches Association in 1998-99
  20. Named America's Best Coach by Time/CNN in 2001
  21. A two-time inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, in 2001 for his individual coaching career and in 2010 as part of the collective induction of the Olympic Dream Team
  22. Inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006, and the United States Olympic Hall of Fame in 2009
  23. Inducted to the Army West Point Sports Hall of Fame in 2009, the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame in 2010 and the Duke Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011
  24. Named the Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year in 2011
  25. Presented the Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award in 2012 and the Lapchick Character Award in 2015
  26. Has served on the board of the Jimmy V Foundation for Cancer Research since its inception in 1993
  27. Has served as an honorary chairman of the Duke Children's Hospital
  28. Founded the Emily Krzyzewski Center – a community center in Durham, named in honor of his late mother, whose 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.
  29. Has been devoted to Duke Basketball for more than 40 years. 
  30. He holds the record for the most wins of any college basketball coach.

So what does Coach K want to do after he retires? Get a dog! He misses his boy Blue, who died last year.

Thanks, Coach K for all the great basketball memories.

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