Peer review: Big-name coaches congratulate Coach K on 1,000 wins
If you needed further proof of just how much respect Coach Mike Krzyzewski has earned over the course of his 1,000 career victories, you need only to ask his peers.
In the video above, his praises are sung by none other than Tobacco Road arch-rival coach Roy Williams, who knows a little bit about winning himself and whose Tar Heels teams have engaged in plenty of memorable battles with the Blue Devils over the years. It may seem to some like an unlikely endorsement, but the two ACC legends respect each other greatly.
Williams jokingly pleads with Coach K: "You’ve got 1,000; why don’t you get your butt outta here and leave the rest of us alone, OK?"
Williams is joined by NBA coaching heavyweights and former champions Rick Carlisle (Dallas Mavericks) and Erik Spoelstra (Miami Heat). Carlisle, a former Virginia Cavalier, admits that "we’re all very grateful that we don’t have to coach against you in the ACC," and Spoelstra thanks Krzyzewski for all those great NBA players he’s introduced to the league.
And there was plenty more backslapping to go around. Several coaches weighed in on-air during the Duke-St. John’s game Sunday.
Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim — who’s no slouch in the wins column with 962 (second place behind Coach K) — good-naturedly ribbed his friend over his age and his use of "my zone":
Kansas Jayhawks coach Bill Self has racked up 548 victories, 10 consecutive Big 12 Conference titles and a national championship — but said "no one has done it better" than Krzyzewski:
John Calipari, who has 574 wins and is coach of the No. 1-ranked Kentucky Wildcats, marveled at how Krzyzewski has succeeded despite all the Duke haters out there, noting that "every game he plays is someone’s Super Bowl":
Perhaps no one’s tribute Sunday was as heartfelt as that of Marquette head coach Steve Wojciechowski, who played for Coach K at Duke and considers him a mentor. "Could not happen to a better man and a better family."
So what’s next for Krzyzewski? Just how high will his win total get?
Well, to hear him tell it, "there’s an end in sight":