Muffet McGraw steps down as Notre Dame women’s basketball coach; Niele Ivey returns to Irish

Muffet McGraw announced Wednesday that she is stepping down as Notre Dame’s women’s basketball coach.

McGraw coached at Notre Dame for 33 years, finishing with a record of 848-252 and a pair of national championships, in 2001 and 2018.

“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 in a statement on Twitter.

McGraw made nine Final Four appearances with Notre Dame, including two as a player.

“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 that I gave it my best every day,” McGraw said.

Niele Ivey, a former player and assistant under McGraw, will become the new head coach. She was an All-American and led Notre Dame to the title as a senior in 2001. Ivey went on to play five seasons in the WNBA, helping the Indiana Fever to their first playoff berth in franchise history in 2002. She later served as an assistant on McGraw’s staff, contributing to the 2018 championship team.

“I am so honored to be able to follow in the legacy that Coach McGraw built here at Notre Dame,” Ivey said in a statement. “My love and appreciation for Coach McGraw is beyond anything I can express. She’s more than a mentor, more than a friend — she’s one of the most influential people in my life.

“I am full of gratitude for Coach McGraw and what she has done for me. She was the first to give me an opportunity to play for Notre Dame and coach here as well. I will forever be grateful for her love and support. I would also like to thank Jack Swarbrick and Father Jenkins for having the faith to move this program forward with me. I can never thank you enough for this incredible opportunity.”

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