Women's Basketball

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Muffet McGraw Named ACC Coach Of The Year
For the sixth time in her Hall of Fame career (and fifth time in her 27-year tenure at Notre Dame), head coach Muffet McGraw has earned a conference's top coaching honor when she was named 2014 ACC Coach of the Year on Wednesday.
 
For the sixth time in her Hall of Fame career (and fifth time in her 27-year tenure at Notre Dame), head coach Muffet McGraw has earned a conference's top coaching honor when she was named 2014 ACC Coach of the Year on Wednesday.

March 5, 2014

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - A day after three of her players earned all-conference honors, Notre Dame head coach Muffet McGraw received her own award from the Atlantic Coast Conference when she was selected as the 2014 ACC Coach of the Year, the league office announced Wednesday.

This marks the second consecutive season, and the sixth time in McGraw's career that she has been named a conference coach of the year, covering five different leagues. She previously was honored in 1983 (East Coast Conference, while coaching at Lehigh University), as well as five times during her 27-year career at Notre Dame -- 1988 (North Star Conference), 1991 (Midwestern Collegiate Conference/Horizon League), 2001 and 2013 (BIG EAST), and 2014 (ACC).

McGraw becomes the second coach in program history to earn conference coach of the year honors in consecutive seasons. Mary DiStanislao pulled off that feat in 1985 and 1986 when the Fighting Irish were members of the North Star Conference.

"This is entirely a team award," McGraw said. "It's a credit to our players and amazing coaching staff -- (associate head coach) Carol Owens, (associate coach) Beth Cunningham and (assistant coach/recruiting coordinator) Niele Ivey -- for all the hard work they have put in so far this season. We do this together as a team and I couldn't be more proud of what we've achieved together to this point."

Wednesday's award was selected through a vote of the ACC's Blue Ribbon Panel, which consists of designated media members who cover the conference's 15 institutions, the conference's 15 head coaches and media relations directors, and other selected national and regional women's basketball experts. Several other ACC specialty awards that also were announced Wednesday, including Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year, can be found on the ACC's official web site, theacc.com.

 

 

A second set of all-conference honors, as voted on by the ACC head coaches at the end of the regular season, will be released next week.

McGraw has led Notre Dame to new heights this season, despite the loss of (at the time) the most successful senior class in school history that included four-time All-America point guard Skylar Diggins. The Fighting Irish not only went undefeated in the regular season for the first time in the program's 37-year history, but along the way, they toppled nine ranked opponents (eight by double digits), including five top-10 foes (four on the road).

In addition, Notre Dame currently ranks in the top 10 in seven NCAA statistical categories, including field goal percentage (1st - .514), scoring offense (2nd - 87.5 ppg.), scoring margin (2nd - +25.6 ppg.), three-point field goal percentage (2nd - .405) and assists (2nd - 21.1 apg.). In each case, those figures either exceed or are within striking distance of the school records in their respective categories, including scoring offense, where the Fighting Irish are averaging a full six points more per game than last year's school record of 81.2 points per game.

McGraw also skillfully guided Notre Dame to a perfect 16-0 record in its inaugural season in the ACC (the ninth in conference history and first 16-0 mark since Duke in 2002-03), earning the program's third consecutive outright regular season conference title (a first in school history). In fact, the Fighting Irish not only won the ACC crown, but did so by four games, just the fourth time in conference history that a team has won the regular season championship by such a wide margin (and the first since Duke in 2001-02). What's more, Notre Dame averaged 86.5 points per game in ACC play, the highest offensive production by a conference school in regular season action since 1990-91, when both Virginia (94.5 ppg.) and North Carolina State (89.1) exceeded that mark.

Following the first undefeated regular season in program history, second-ranked Notre Dame (29-0, 16-0 ACC) is the top seed for the 2014 ACC Championship and has earned a double-bye into the quarterfinal round, where it will play its inaugural ACC postseason game at 2 p.m. (ET) Friday at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C., against the winner of the second-round game between eighth-seeded Miami and No. 9 seed Florida State.

Notre Dame's ACC quarterfinal contest will be televised live to a national cable audience on the ACC-Regional Sports Networks (check local listings or theacc.com for presenting affiliates, which do not include any South Bend-area TV outlets at this time), as well as worldwide on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN mobile app. The Notre Dame Radio Network broadcast also can be heard live in the South Bend area on Pulse FM (96.9/92.1) and free of charge worldwide on the official Fighting Irish athletics multimedia platform, WatchND.

For more information on the Notre Dame women's basketball program, sign up to follow the Fighting Irish women's basketball Twitter pages (@ndwbbsid or @ndwbb), like the program on Facebook (facebook.com/ndwbb) or register for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system through the "Fan Center" pulldown menu on the front page at UND.com.

-- Chris Masters, Associate Athletic Media Relations Director

Event Calendar

Delta

November 3
7:00 PM
Roberts Wesleyan
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)
November 11
7:00 PM
Central Michigan Notre Dame
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
November 14
7:00 PM
WNIT Quarterfinals
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
November 17
7:00 PM
WNIT Semifinals
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
November 20
3:00 PM
WNIT Final
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

CBS Sports Network
November 22
8:00 PM
UL-Lafayette
Houston, Texas (Campbell Center)
November 26
1:00 PM
TCU
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
November 30
9:00 PM
Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa (Carver-Hawkeye Arena)

BTN
December 4
1:00 PM
Valparaiso
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
December 7
7:00 PM
UConn
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ESPN2
December 10
8:00 PM
DePaul
Chicago, Ill. (McGrath-Phillips Arena)
December 18
2:00 PM
Toledo
Toledo, Ohio (Savage Arena)
December 20
7:00 PM
Michigan State
East Lansing, Mich. (Breslin Center)

BTN
December 27
6:30 PM
Chattanooga
Chattanooga, Tenn. (McKenzie Arena)
December 29
7:00 PM
North Carolina State
Raleigh, N.C. (Reynolds Coliseum)

ACC Network Extra
January 2
7:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Atlanta, Ga. (McCamish Pavilion)
January 5
7:00 PM
Wake Forest
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
January 8
3:00 PM
Miami
Coral Gables, Fla. (BankUnited Center)

ESPN Flex
January 12
7:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Notre Dame, Ind.

ACC Network Extra
January 16
7:00 PM
Tennessee
Knoxville, Tenn. (Thompson-Boling Arena)

ESPN2
January 19
7:00 PM
Boston College
Chestnut Hill, Mass. (Conte Forum)
January 22
12:00 PM
North Carolina
Chapel Hill, N.C. (Carmichael Arena)

ESPNU
January 26
7:00 PM
Duke
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
January 29
12:00 PM
Virginia
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ESPNU
February 2
7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Va. (Cassell Coliseum)
February 6
7:00 PM
Louisville
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ESPN2
February 12
1:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
February 16
7:00 PM
Clemson
Clemson, S.C. (Littlejohn Coliseum)
February 19
5:00 PM
Syracuse
Syracuse, N.Y. (Carrier Dome)

ESPN2
February 23
7:00 PM
Boston College
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC Network Extra
February 26
1:00 PM
Florida State
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ESPN2
March 17
TBA
NCAA First/Second Rounds
TBD
March 24
TBA
NCAA Regionals
TBD
March 31
TBA
NCAA Semifinals
Dallas, Texas (American Airlines Center)
April 2
TBA
NCAA Final
Dallas, Texas (American Airlines Center)

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