Mike Krzyzewski Talks Duke Retirement, Jon Scheyer, 2021 Season and More

Adam WellsJune 3, 2021

Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski directs his players against North Carolina State during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Durham, N.C., Monday, March 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
AP Photo/Gerry Broome

Mike Krzyzewski confirmed Thursday the 2021-22 season will be his final campaign as the head coach of the Duke Blue Devils.

The 74-year-old held a press conference to announce his retirement at the conclusion of the upcoming season.

Krzyzewski engaged in a long-running tradition at Cameron Indoor Stadium by walking to the podium as Cascada's song "Everytime We Touch" played over the speaker system.

Clara Goodwin @ClaraGoodwinTV

I don’t know what I was expecting but it certainly wasn’t Mike Krzyzewski entering his retirement press conference dancing to Everytime We Touch by Cascada pic.twitter.com/yfkWgMITcV

Coach K said his decision to walk away has nothing to do with the potential changes to college athletics regarding name, image and likeness rules. He said he and his wife, Mickie, made the choice together.

β€œThe reason we’re doing this is because Mickie and I have decided the journey is gonna be over in a year," he said.

As for his expectations in 2021-22, Krzyzewski hopes to end his historic career on a high note.

Jon Rothstein @JonRothstein

Coach K on next season: <br><br>"We're going to try and return this place (Duke) to what it's supposed to be. And then, we'll walk away."

Jon Rothstein @JonRothstein

Coach K on Duke in 21-22:<br><br>"I want this to be as good of a basketball team as we've had in 46 years. That's now what I'm going to focus on."

Expectations are always high for the Blue Devils, but they'll experience even more pressure next year in their last ride with Krzyzewski.

Duke looks to have a strong roster for the 2021-22 season. Its recruiting class ranks fourth in the nation in 247Sports' composite rankings, led by 5-star prospects Paolo Banchero, AJ Griffin and Trevor Keels.

The Blue Devils have a succession plan in place for Krzyzewski. Jon Scheyer, who played for Duke from 2006 to 2010 and has been an assistant coach since 2014, will take over.

"I don't want everything to end when I stop coaching," Krzyzewski said of announcing Scheyer as the next head coach. "I want it to continue."

Krzyzewski also called his dynamic with Scheyer and fellow assistant coaches Nolan Smith and Chris Carrawell "a partnership."

The 2021-22 season will mark Krzyzewski's 42nd year at Duke. His 1,170 career wins with the Blue Devils and Army are the most in Division I men's basketball history.

Krzyzewski ranks second in Division I men's history with five national titles. Only John Wooden (10) has more.

Duke is scheduled to tip off Krzyzewski's final season Nov. 9 against John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats at Madison Square Garden in the Champions Classic.


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