Update Your Profile

Stay up to date with all West Point news and stay connected with fellow grads

Update your Register Entry

Cullum Files

historical records

Class Notes

login required, available to graduates & widows

2005 Distinguished Graduate Award


Michael W. Krzyzewski has achieved an extraordinary coaching record in basketball and at the same time, has increased national awareness of the principles of "Duty, Honor, Country." In doing so, Mike Krzyzewski has brought great credit upon the United States Military Academy. In the eyes of the sports world and those of the Long Gray Line, he is a truly distinguished graduate of West Point.

As a cadet, he was a three-year basketball letterman and played on two Army basketball teams that were selected to participate in the National Invitational Tournament (NIT). During his First Class year (1968-1969), he was selected as Captain of the Army basketball team, named to the second team All-NIT (1969), and participated in the North-South Game (1969). As a West Point varsity basketball player, he belonged to a team that never lost to the United States Naval Academy.

Upon graduation from USMA, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Field Artillery. He served at Fort Carson, Colorado, the Republic of South Korea, and at the United States Military Academy Preparatory School. During this period, he began to hone his coaching skills by working with service teams and by serving as head basketball coach at the Prep School. In 1974, Captain Krzyzewski resigned from the Army and immediately joined Bobby Knight´s staff as a graduate assistant coach at the University of Indiana. That basketball season, the Indiana basketball team posted a 31-1 overall record.

In 1975, Mike Krzyzewski returned to West Point as the Head Basketball Coach. While at Army, he led his teams to an overall record of 73 wins and 59 losses and took the cadets to one berth in the National Invitational Tournament. Importantly, during this five-year stint at the helm of Army basketball, he achieved a record of four victories and only one loss against Navy.

In 1980, he became the head basketball coach at Duke University. By the conclusion of the 2005 basketball season, Mike had completed 25 years of coaching at Duke, where his achievements have been truly remarkable. Of particular note is his success in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and on the national level. As Duke´s all-time winningest coach, he has built a basketball dynasty that few programs in the history of the game can match. His achievements in the ACC include ten ACC regular season championships and nine ACC Tournament championships, including titles in six of the last seven years. He has been named ACC Coach of the Year five times. At the national level, he has coached Duke to twenty-one NCAA tournament bids, and ten NCAA Final Fours, and three National Championships. He has also achieved the all-time most NCAA Tournament victories (66) and the second-highest active NCAA Tournament winning percentage (78.6%). In recognition of his excellence, he has been named National Coach of the Year twelve times and on 5 October 2001 in Springfield, Massachusetts, Coach Kryzewski was enshrined as a coach in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. To date, his overall record as a Division I basketball coach is a remarkable 721 wins and 246 losses.

On the international level, Coach Krzyzewski has coached in the World University Games as well as the World Championship Games and Goodwill Games. In 1992, he was an assistant coach for America´s gold-medal-winning Olympic Team. Within the ranks of his profession, he also has been a leader, serving as President, National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and member of the NCAA Basketball Issues Committee.

Above all, Coach Krzyzewski has demonstrated that victories on the court are not the only important consideration for the student-athlete. His Duke basketball players have achieved a superb graduation rate, with Coach Krzyzewski emphasizing to his players that they must grow as students and as responsible citizens.

Coach Krzyzewski has co-authored three books: A Season is a Lifetime (1992) that addresses the 1992 national championship; Five-Point Play (2001) that relives Duke´s journey toward the 2001 NCAA title; and last, Leading with the Heart (2000) emphasizing Mike´s successful strategies for basketball, business and life. Additionally, Mike has been involved in the development of numerous other videos and other publications.

The concept of "a lifetime of service" remains a hallmark of Mike Krzyzewski. Some examples of his service to the community include his efforts on behalf of the Children´s Miracle Network, the Jimmie V Foundation, the Comprehensive Cancer Center, and NABC Coaches vs Cancer. In 2000, he was the first winner of the NABC Literacy Award entitled "Verizon Reads." He is also leading fundraising efforts for the Emily Krzyzewski Family Life Center, a local community center located near the Duke Campus and named after Mike´s mother.

Over the past thirty years, Coach Krzyzewski´s success as a basketball coach and exemplar of the ideals of West Point has become renowned. Throughout the Nation, the nickname – "Coach K" – brings to mind an extraordinary man and the rock-solid values he embodies. Through his lifetime of achievements, he has done much to burnish the national image of West Point. Accordingly, the Association of Graduates takes great pride in presenting the 2005 Distinguished Graduate Award to Michael W. Krzyzewski, USMA Class of 1969.

Chairman and CEO