You've probably already heard by now: legendary coach Tara VanDerveer got her 900th win yesterday when the Stanford Cardinal beat the FGCU Eagles 83-59 in the Hardwood Tournament of Hope in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Having already been inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame, there should be little doubt that she's a great coach but this is one of those markers of greatness that we can use as shorthand for determining the candidates for greatest ever.
Plenty of others have already written about her though: C&R already posted a fanpost about it last night and the following is a selection of other links from around the web.
- Michelle Smith of espnW shares VanDerveer's reflections on her own career and looks at how close she is to matching or surpassing "the gold standard": Pat Summitt's 1,098 wins, which would take a while to catch up to. Read more >>>
- Kevin Danna - a Stanford alum himself as well as a broadcaster for the Santa Cruz Warriors along with former Cardinal women's basketball player Ros Gold-Onwude - wrote a piece for Pac-12.com in which he highlighted how the legendary coach has elevated players, "helping her student-athletes to 20 All-American honors, 17 Pac-10/12 Player of the Year awards, 61 first-team All-Pac-10/12 selections and two Naismith Player of the Year honors as the boss, not to mention the 34 appointments to Team USA in which she has had a hand." Read more >>>
- FGCU Athletics had a recap of the actual game that occurred leading up to VanDerveer's 900th win, which featured another double-double for Chiney Ogwumike and 14-for-44 (!!!) 3-point shooting from FGCU. Read more >>>
- Paul Gackle of the San Francisco Examiner wrote an article that highlighted a point that all of us who follow west coast basketball are probably already aware of: “She just cares about the Pac-12 and West Coast basketball,” Cal coach Lindsay Gottlieb said. “She’s one of the people in our game that has always given to the greater good.” Gackle's article itself reflects the point by the paths two of VanDerveer's former players have taken: both Charmin Smith and Katy Steding are now assistants at arch rival Cal. Read more >>>
- Mark Soltau writing for Stanford Athletics got in touch with people who have come into contact with VanDerveer across her 35-year coaching career, including former player and current San Francisco Dons coach Jennifer Azzi: "...all the details of the game matter. We had to do things perfectly. I don’t know if she is still that way, but if we were screening, we had to set it; if we were doing a full-court drill and we had to do it in a certain time, nothing slipped. I missed my two-mile time my senior year by one second and I was the second best time on the team, but I still had early morning conditioning for the next two weeks at 7 a.m. That’s the way we did things, and it paid off for us with a national championship." Read more >>>
- Elliott Almond of the San Jose Mercury News reports on one of VanDerveer's defining - and most impressive - attributes: "Before the game, VanDerveer said she wouldn't have time to think about No. 900. As usual, the coach focused on the opponent." Read more >>>
- Jayda Evans of the Seattle Times noted in her preview of the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport's "groundbreaking documentary" “Media Coverage and Female Athletes” that, "Only five women have achieved the milestone but the game wasn’t televised and build-up was barely covered by mainstream media. Maybe by the time VanDerveer wins her 1,000th, we as a society will catch up to the obvious disparity that’s only justification is based on a myth that no one cares." Read more >>>
- Rick Nixon of NCAA.com looked at a number of milestones that have already been achieved early on in the 2013-14 season, which of course include VanDerveer but also coaches from Louisville's Jeff Walz to Campbell's Wanda Watkins. Read more >>>
- At the other end of the spectrum, the Columbus Monthly published a piece by Katie Smith - one of the many people who was touched by VanDerveer as a member of the 1996 Olympic team - reflected on her playing career as she begins to embark upon a career as a coach with the New York Liberty next season. Read more >>>
Feel free to drop any additional insights about VanDerveer or links about the milestone victory in the comments below.