Sept. 8, 2017
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – After 853 career wins, seven final fours and a national title, Notre Dame’s Karen and Kevin Keyes Head Women's Basketball Coach Muffet McGraw will finally take her rightful spot among the game’s elite Friday evening when she gets enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
NBA-TV will broadcast live all the festivities Friday, starting with its red-carpet show at 6:30 p.m. ET. The 2017 Enshrinement Ceremony will then immediately follow at 7:30 p.m. inside Symphony Hall.
“It’s been such a great time to reflect back on all of the assistant coaches, all of the amazing players that I’ve had,” McGraw said. “It’s really something that I rarely do — usually I’m looking forward to what’s coming next. So, it’s really been great to talk to all the players and coaches and just to think about this 30-year career at Notre Dame. I mean, it’s amazing that I’ve been able to stay here that long, and I’m just so lucky to be here.”
The festivities officially got underway on Thursday with a 2017 Class autograph signing, followed by Coach McGraw receiving her orange Hall of Fame jacket in the middle of the Jerry Colangelo ‘Court of Dreams.’ Each member of the 2017 Class then briefly addressed all the fans and media in attendance.
“Orange is not a color I’ve worn much in my career, but I’m really going to enjoy wearing this one,” McGraw stated. “Especially as I look up and see all the incredible coaches here that have come before me. The thing that makes something like this really special is the people you get to share this with.”
Thursday concluded with the Family Reunion and Awards Dinner where the 2017 Class was joined by the game’s greats, including several past Hall of Famers. The evening began with an on-stage recognition and concluded with the presentation of the Mannie Jackson Human Spirit Awards, the John Bunn Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Curt Gowdy Media Award.
Up next, Coach McGraw will assemble her Hall of Fame look on Friday and take to the red carpet, before ultimately hitting the stage on NBA-TV to deliver her Hall of Fame acceptance speech inside Symphony Hall.
After officially being honored and inducted in, Coach McGraw, alongside fellow 2017 class member Rebecca Lobo, will become the 31st and 32nd woman to be immortalized at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
“I do take a lot of pride in that,” McGraw said. “I think it’s great for women to be recognized on the same par as the men. In the future, there’s going to be a lot more women here, so I’m kind of happy to be blazing a trail.”
The Hall of Fame festivities will then conclude Saturday evening with the 2017 Induction Celebration Party at the Mohegan Sun, which is highlighted by the Class of 2017 Ring Ceremony.
Josh Bates joined Fighting Irish Media as associate athletics communications director in July of 2017, serving as the women’s basketball and men’s golf contact. Bates earned both his bachelor’s (2011) and master’s (2014) degree in sports management from the University of Illinois. He also worked as a grad assistant at Illinois from 2012-14 and worked full-time at Tulane University from 2014-17.