Villanova coach Perretta to retire after 42nd season

10/31/2019 3:55:39 PM EST

Villanova women's basketball coach Harry Perretta announced Thursday that his record-tying 42nd season in 2019-20 will be his last with the Wildcats.

Perretta, 64, will retire from coaching at the end of the 2019-20 campaign and will stay at Villanova as special assistant to the athletic director through 2020-21.

Perretta, who was just 22 when he took over the program in 1978, has a career record of 765-476.

His 42 seasons will match Yvonne Kaufmann of Elizabethtown College (1971-2012) for the most seasons at one school in any division of NCAA women's college basketball. His win total ranks seventh among active Division I coaches and 13th all-time.

"Harry is truly irreplaceable," athletic director Mark Jackson said. "His ability to build countless relationships with our women's basketball student-athletes and entire community for over 40 years is reflective of how much he cares and how much he loves to lead with his heart."

Perretta has led the Wildcats to 11 NCAA Tournament appearances and 11 WNIT berths, including postseason invitations in each of the past seven years. Villanova reached the Elite Eight of the NCAA tourney in 2003 and won Big East tournament titles in 1986, 1987 and 2003.

He is a four-time Big East Coach of the Year and is a five-time Philadelphia Big 5 Coach of the Year.

"Villanova has allowed me to be the person I am for the last 42 years and for that I am forever grateful," Perretta said. "Villanova will always be home to me."

--Field Level Media

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