C. Vivian Stringer, one of women's college basketball's winningest coaches, has announced her retirement after a 50-year career.
Stringer, the head coach at Rutgers since 1995, has the fourth most wins all time in Division I women's basketball with 1,055 career victories.
"I am officially announcing my retirement," Stringer said in a statement. "My life has been defined by coaching and I've been on this journey for over five decades. It is rare that someone gets to do what they love for this long and I have been fortunate to do that."
Get Tri-state area news and weather forecasts to your inbox. Sign up for NBC New York newsletters.
Elected to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009, Stringer made 28 appearances in the NCAA Tournament and was the first women's or men's coach to take three different schools to the Final Four (Cheyney State, Iowa, Rutgers).
"After recently celebrating the first women's Final Four team at Cheyney State University, where it all started, it sat with me that I have been at this for a long time," Stringer said. "It is important to step aside and challenge others to step up and take this game forward."
Stringer was not on the sideline during the 2021-2022 season due to COVID-19 concerns, with Rutgers associate head coach Tim Eatman filling in.
Stringer's retirement goes into effect Sept 1. Rutgers, which announced that a national search will begin immediately to find a successor, will honor Stringer by naming the court at Jersey Mike's Arena "C. Vivian Stringer Court."
"This was the hardest decision of my life, but I thank God he has allowed me to do the thing I love most," Stringer said. "I am ready to start my new journey and spending more time with my family, children, and grandchildren. I am truly blessed to have had so many wonderful people in my life."