Note: This story was last updated on April 6, 2022. 

Mike Krzyzewski’s legendary career with the Blue Devils has come to an end.

His achievements include 5 National Championships, 13 Final Four appearances and 15 ACC Tournament crowns.

Krzyzewski has also had success vs. even the best of his peers. He entered this season with a winning record vs. all but one active Hall of Fame coach. He also won a staggering 101 NCAA Tournament games in his career — no other coach has more than 77.

Here’s 20 of the most remarkable facts from Coach K’s career:

1. Coach K has 194 more wins than any other Division I coach

Krzyzewski was dominant for decades and finished his career with 1,202 victories. Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim is his closest peer, and he has just 998 (official) wins as of the end of the 2021-22 season. That’s a difference of 204 total victories.

For context — Kevin Keatts, Steve Forbes and Earl Grant are just a few coaches who have yet to reach 204 total wins in their careers.

2. Coach K hasn’t had a losing season since 1982-83

Duke went 13-18 in the 1994-95 season. That’s Duke’s most recent losing campaign, but Krzyzewski went 9-3 that season before missing the remainder of the year due to complications from back surgery.

Krzyzewski’s last losing season came in 1982-83. It was his 3rd season at Duke and his 2nd consecutive losing campaign. To put it in perspective how long ago that was, here are a few fun facts:

  • Ronald Reagan was President of the United States
  • The average gas price was just $1.16 per gallon
  • North Carolina coach Hubert Davis hadn’t yet begun high school
  • Jim Boeheim was in his 7th season at Syracuse

3. Most 20+ win seasons of any coach (37)

Krzyzewski is the all-time leader in seasons of 20+ wins in college basketball history. For context, here are the totals for some of his contemporaries:

  • Jim Boeheim: 34*
  • Dean Smith: 30
  • Bob Huggins: 30
  • Roy Williams: 29
  • Bob Knight: 29
  • Jim Calhoun: 28

*Boeheim’s number would be 38 if not for having wins vacated in parts of 5 seasons over his tenure.

4. Most Final Four appearances all-time

Duke’s NCAA Tournament run in 2022 gave Krzyzewski his 13th trip to the Final Four, which is enough to pass legendary UCLA coach John Wooden.

It could be easily argued that Krzyzewski’s path to that record was tougher than Wooden’s too. All of Wooden’s Final Four appearances came between 1962 and 1975. The NCAA Tournament field was significantly smaller in those days — it included just 25 teams until expanding to 32 in 1975.

UCLA often received a first-round bye, meaning it only had to win 2 NCAA Tournament games to qualify for the Final Four. That’s one reason Wooden racked up just 47 Tournament wins in his career — a full 55 wins fewer than Coach K.

Each of Krzyzewski’s 13 trips to the Final Four game against a 64 (or 68) team field. In the modern era, only Roy Williams (9) and Tom Izzo (8) are remotely close to Krzyzewski’s 13 Final Four appearances.

5. 102 NCAA Tournament wins. Next closest is 77

Roy Williams is 2nd all-time with 77 wins in the NCAA Tournament. Jim Boeheim, Tom Izzo and Bill Self are the only active coaches with more than 50 NCAA Tournament victories.

That gap between Krzyzewski and Williams — 25 wins — represents a solid career for a lot of college basketball coaches. For context, Lon Kruger — who made the Sweet 16 with 4 programs and made the Final Four with 2 — won 20 NCAA Tournament games in his career.

Accomplished coaches like Sean Miller, Bruce Weber, Dana Altman, Matt Painter and Bruce Pearl, to name a few, have yet to reach that threshold.

6. Only 3 teams have a winning record vs. Mike Krzyzewski (minimum 3 games played)

Here’s the complete list of programs with a winning record vs. Coach K, with a minimum of four games played:

Louisville, 9-8
Arizona, 5-3
Lafayette, 4-3 (Krzyzewski is 2-0 while at Duke)

Those records include his days at Army, which explains the record vs. Lafayette.

Lute Olson often had K’s number while he was at Arizona. The Wildcats defeated Duke 3 times in Top-25 matchups under Olson. They’ve also won the last 2 meetings vs. Duke — including once in March.

Coach K won a big one though, taking down Arizona in the 2001 NCAA Tournament championship game.

7. Longest winning streak was 32 games

Duke went on a magical run during the 1998-99 season. The Blue Devils won 32 consecutive games, which still stands as the longest winning streak of Krzyzewski’s career. That team had multiple future NBA players, including Elton Brand and Shane Battier.

The streak produced wins over 10 ranked opponents, including 3 victories vs. North Carolina. The Blue Devils won by 20 points vs. No. 14 UNC on Feb. 27, 1999. Roughly a week later, they beat the Tar Heels by 13 en route to an ACC Championship.

Unfortunately for Duke, that team did not get a storybook ending. The Blue Devils fell to UConn in the National Championship, thus ending their season — and the streak.

8. Longest losing streak was 4 games (2006-07)

Perhaps even more impressive is Krzyzewski’s ability to keep the Blue Devils from long stretches of bad play. The longest losing streak of his career is 4 games — which most recently happened in the 2006-07 season. It happened twice that season.

First, when his Blue Devils lost 4 consecutive games between Feb. 1 and Feb. 11, 2007.

The streak included an overtime defeat at Virginia and a home loss to No. 5 North Carolina. Duke broke the streak with a win at No. 21 Boston College on Feb. 14.

However, that wasn’t the end of the story. Duke lost 4 games to end that season, too. It lost to North Carolina and Maryland to end the regular season, couldn’t get past NC State in the ACC Tournament and then famously fell to Virginia Commonwealth in the first round of the Big Dance.

But since then? Coach K hasn’t been beaten more than 3 times in a row.

9. Most seasons ranked at No. 1 (21)

When Duke spent time at No. 1 in the AP Poll earlier this season, it marked the 21st season where Krzyzewski’s Blue Devils reached that benchmark.

Two titans of the game — John Wooden and Roy Williams — are tied for the 2nd-most seasons with an appearance at No. 1 with just 12 each.

10. Most weeks ranked No. 1 with 127

Additionally, Krzyzewski has the most individual weeks at No. 1 all-time. He’s been No. 1 in the AP Top 25 a staggering 127 times. Wooden is close with 121 weeks on top, but it falls off a cliff from there. Legendary Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp is 3rd at just 61 weeks.

11. Most No. 1 NBA Draft picks produced (3)

Only Kentucky’s John Calipari has produced as many No. 1 overall NBA draft picks as Krzyzewski. Duke has sent Elton Brand (1999), Kyrie Irving (2011) and Zion Williams (2019) to the NBA as the top pick.

Brand played in the NBA for 17 seasons and is now a front-office executive with the Philadelphia 76ers. Irving is in his 11th NBA season and won a championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016. Williamson has battled injuries through the first 3 seasons, but is still considered to be one of the best young players in the league.

Looking ahead, Krzyzewski will have one final chance to overtake Calipari for this record before retiring. Forward Paolo Banchero is in contention to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft.

12. Coach K’s record vs. active Hall of Fame coaches

Krzyzewski has dominated even the best of his peers. Of the six other active coaches in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Krzyzewski has a losing record vs. just one of them.

Here’s how it breaks down:

  • vs. Jim Boeheim: 10-5
  • vs. John Calipari: 4-1
  • vs. Tom Izzo: 13-3
  • vs. Rick Pitino: 5-3
  • vs. Bill Self: 3-3
  • vs. Jay Wright: 0-1
  • Total record: 35-16

That’s a 68.6% winning percentage against the other top head coaches in this generation. To put that into perspective, many great coaches don’t win that often even vs. a normal schedule. Jay Wright — who is the most recent inductee on this list — has a career winning percentage just north of 69%.

13. Same, but in the NCAA Tournament

  • vs. Jim Boeheim: 2-0
  • vs. John Calipari: 0-0
  • vs. Tom Izzo: 4-2
  • vs. Rick Pitino: 1-1
  • vs. Bill Self: 1-1
  • vs. Jay Wright: 0-1
  • Total record: 8-5

It didn’t get much better for Krzyzewski’s peers in March. It’s obviously a much smaller sample size, but he still performed exceptionally well against the other top coaches in the game when it mattered most.

He’s yet to face John Calipari in the Big Dance and his only meeting with Jay Wright came over a decade ago. That could change this season with Duke, Kentucky and Villanova all expected to go deep in the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

14. Coach K has had a double-digit winning streak vs. 10 ACC teams

Krzyzewski was dominant in conference play for the majority of his career. He produced double-digit winning streaks vs. 10 different ACC teams over the years.

Here’s his longest winning streak vs. each of those teams:

  • Clemson: 22 games (Feb. 18, 1997-Jan. 19, 2008)
  • Virginia: 16 games (Jan. 7, 1984 – Jan. 6, 1990)
  • Georgia Tech: 15 games (Jan. 5, 1997 – Jan. 31, 2004)
  • Maryland*: 15 games (Feb. 13, 1988 – March 2, 1994)
  • Wake Forest: 14 games (Feb. 5, 1997 – Jan. 12, 2003)
  • NC State: 13 games (Jan. 7, 1998 – March 10, 2002)
  • FSU: 12 games (Jan. 20, 1996-Feb. 4, 2001)
  • Boston College 11 games (March 13, 2009-Jan. 7, 2017)
  • Miami: 10 games (Feb. 19, 1986 – Feb. 2, 2008)
  • Notre Dame: 10 games (Feb. 7, 1988 – March 16, 2002)

15. Coach K’s first game at Duke: Saturday, Nov. 29, 1980 vs. Stetson

Krzyzewski’s first game as Duke’s head coach came on Nov. 29, 1980 against Stetson. The Blue Devils won 67-49. Tom Emma was Duke’s leading scorer with 19 points. An estimated 8,100 fans were in attendance at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

This game took place prior to the inclusion of shot clocks or the 3-point line in college basketball.

The first play of the game — and of the Krzyzewski era — was a steal by Stetson guard Brad Weston.

16. The early years weren’t always easy

Duke’s first 3 seasons under Krzyzewski didn’t go smoothly. The Blue Devils went 38-48 over that span and failed to make the postseason each year.

Duke decided to stick with him, and that choice was rewarded immediately. Duke won 20+ games in each of the next 11 seasons, a streak that was only broken in 1994-95 when Krzyzewski missed most of the year due to back surgery.

The rest, as they say, is history.

17. Only 5 coaches have multiple wins over top-5 Duke at Cameron

Earlier this season, Duke lost a stunner to Miami at home. It pushed the Hurricanes to first place in the ACC and knocked Duke outside the top 5 in the AP Top 25.

But it also gave context to how rare losses like that are in Krzyzewski’s tenure. With the win, Jim Larranaga became just the 5th coach ever to record multiple wins over a top-5 Duke squad at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Here are the other 4 coaches, per ESPN Stats & Info:

  • North Carolina coach Dean Smith
  • North Carolina coach Roy Williams
  • Wake Forest coach Dave Odom
  • Maryland coach Gary Williams

18. 132 NCAA Tournament games

This might be Krzyzewski’s most unbreakable record. He coached in a total of 132 NCAA Tournament games in his storied career and won nearly 77% of them.

Roy Williams is the only other coach in history with more than 100 NCAA Tournament games. Kansas’ Bill Self may eventually have a chance to pass Krzyzewski, but it’s not likely. Self, who will turn 60 years old in December, has 76 career NCAA Tournament games under his belt. Boheim (92) and Izzo (76) seem unlikely to reach that benchmark, either.

19. 8 National Players of the Year

In addition to all his other accolades, Krzyzewski has produced 8 Naismith National Player of the Year award winners. That’s the most all-time.

Here’s that list:

  • Johnny Dawkins (1986)
  • Danny Ferry (1989)
  • Christian Laettner (1992)
  • Elton Brand (1999)
  • Shane Battier (2001)
  • Jason Williams (2002)
  • JJ Redick (2006)
  • Zion Williamson (2019)

Brand and Williamson went on to be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft.

20. History vs. North Carolina

Krzyzewski’s first matchup with UNC didn’t take place in Durham or Chapel Hill. On Dec. 5, 1980, Duke and North Carolina met in an annual event dubbed “The Big Four” in Greensboro. The Blue Devils lost a tight game 78-76, mostly because future NBA Hall-of-Famer James Worthy dropped 26 points.

However, he wouldn’t have to wait much longer for his first win over UNC. Duke defeated its rival 66-65 on Feb. 28, 1981. The win was thanks to a magical shot by Gene Banks — he hit a game-tying jumper as time expired at the end of regulation. Banks also hit the game-winner in overtime with less than 17 seconds remaining.

That turned out to be an important win — Krzyzewski wouldn’t get another one over UNC until March 10, 1984. It was a drought of 6 games without a win vs. the Tar Heels, which turned out to be the longest of his career.

For his career, Krzyzewski finished 50-46 against the Tar Heels. However, North Carolina got the last laugh. The Tar Heels defeated Duke in Durham in Krzyzewski’s final home game on March 5, 2022. Four different UNC players scored 20+ points.

Then, in the first-ever meeting between Duke and North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament, the Tar Heels won again in a Final Four matchup for the ages. UNC guard Caleb Love hit one of the most memorable shots in North Carolina basketball history to seal the win and effectively end Krzyzewski’s career.

Here’s Krzyzewski’s record vs. every UNC coach he’s faced:

  • vs. Dean Smith: 14-24
  • vs. Bill Guthridge: 6-2
  • vs. Matt Doherty: 7-2
  • vs. Roy Williams: 22-16
  • vs. Hubert Davis: 1-2

The below photo was taken as Coach K shook hands with North Carolina head coach Hubert Davis following Duke’s loss to North Carolina in the 2022 Final Four. This was Coach K’s last game.

Coach K 20 facts

Executive Editor Chris Wright contributed to this report.