Kim Mulkey made NCAA history in 2012 when the head coach of the Baylor University women’s basketball team led the Lady Bears to a perfect 40-game season—the first for any collegiate basketball program—that was capped with a national championship.
For her record of success that has made Mulkey the first person, male or female, in NCAA history to win a basketball national championship as a player, assistant coach, and head coach, she has earned the United States Sports Academy’s 2012 C. Vivian Stringer Coaching Award.
Mulkey received the award during a pre-game presentation before No. 1 Baylor’s home opener against Lamar on Nov. 9. The award was presented by Dr. Donn Renwick, a former dean at the Academy and now a distance learning faculty member.
The Academy’s C. Vivian Stringer Coaching Award is annually presented to someone like Mulkey who has experienced outstanding achievement as a coach for female teams. In addition, the coaching award honors women who exhibit a high standard of propriety, imagination, and innovation as a character-builder in the tradition of great teacher-coaches.
Entering her 13th season at Baylor, Mulkey’s teams have won two national championships, made three Final Fours, and reached the Sweet 16 seven times in Baylor’s 11 NCAA tournament appearances. The Lady Bears won the national championship last year by defeating Notre Dame and also won in 2005.
Baylor has won 20 games in every season since Mulkey took over the program in 2000. In fact, she won her 300th career game in her 12th season, which is faster than any other active coaches ranked ahead of her in total victories. Connecticut’s Geno Auriemma attained the milestone in 13 seasons and Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer did it in 14 years. Mulkey’s overall record is 338 wins and 79 losses, which gives her .811 winning percentage that ranks fifth all-time.
Mulkey was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2000 for her accomplishments as a player at Louisiana Tech University. Since the inception of the NCAA women’s tournament in 1982, which Mulkey won as a player with Louisiana Tech, she has been involved in that tournament as a player or coach every year except 1985 and 2003. She also won the 1984 gold medal as a member of the United States team.