After a historic term as head coach of the Rutgers women’s basketball team that included two Final Four appearances, C. Vivian Stringer has officially announced her retirement. Stringer spent 27 years leading the Scarlet Knights, and the court at Jersey Mike’s Arena on Livingston campus will be named after her.
“My life has been defined by coaching, and I've been on this journey for over five decades,” Stringer said. ”It is rare that someone gets to do what they love for this long, and I have been fortunate to do that. I love Rutgers University for the incredible opportunity they offered me and the tremendous victories we achieved together.”
Stringer was only the second full-time head coach in program history, following in the footsteps of Theresa Grentz who joined her in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame this year.
Stringer’s coaching career lasted 50 years and includes a long list of accomplishments.
She is fifth all-time in NCAA women's basketball history with 1,055 career wins and became the first Black Division I coach to reach the 1,000 total in November 2018. Stringer is also the first coach to ever lead three different programs to the Final Four with Cheyney State, Iowa and Rutgers all appearing under her lead.
In her time with the Knights, Stringer recorded 535 wins and qualified for 10 straight NCAA Tournaments from 2003 to 2012. Rutgers made two Final Four appearances in 2000 and 2007, with the program reaching the NCAA National Championship game in 2007.
In her time coaching, Stringer helped 21 players get drafted into the WNBA and also others who played overseas. She received a gold medal as an assistant coach on the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team.
Stringer’s retirement will be official on Sept. 1, and she will be paid $872,988 as part of a retirement agreement. Athletic Director Pat Hobbs will begin a national search for the next head coach immediately.
“I am forever indebted to all the coaches who I worked beside,” Stringer said. “Some were former players, some were colleagues, but all were friends and family at the end of the day and were my most trusted relationships. To the young ladies that I was fortunate to have coached and mentored into the women and leaders of today, keep pushing the barriers, keep pushing for your spot at the table and always know who you are.”
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