June 15, 2008 - by
Coach Graf Retires From Coaching

June 15, 2008

Florida State Director of Athletics Randy Spetman announced today the retirement of Dr. JoAnne Graf, head softball coach since 1979.  With 1,437 victories to her credit in her 30-year career, no coach in the history of college softball has won more games than Coach Graf.


“What Coach Graf has meant to Florida State and its softball program the past 30 years is beyond words,” Spetman said.  “We thank her for her tremendous dedication to our university, our athletics department and our student-athletes.”


Graf will begin a new chapter in her life in the fall when she starts teaching in Florida State‘s School of Education.


“I earned my PhD anticipating that one day when my coaching career was over that I would move into teaching,” Graf said. “The opportunity to join Florida State‘s outstanding Sport Administration faculty presented itself and I decided to accept the invitation to join them.  I’ve been very fortunate to have both played at Florida State and then coached 30 years as a head coach at my alma mater.  It is a privilege that very few people are able to experience.  I will miss the players, the coaches and the staff but I feel that at some point, your coaching career ends.  We have a solid group of players returning plus some exciting newcomers so I feel very comfortable that I am leaving the program in very good shape.” 


The first collegiate softball coach to earn 1400 victories, Graf’s numerous achievements with Florida State softball include AIAW slowpitch national championships in 1981 and 1982, seven  trips to the Women’s College World Series, with the first coming in 1986 – just four years after FSU went to NCAA fastpitch softball, 21 NCAA Regional appearances and 10 Atlantic Coast Conference titles.


Named the ACC Coach of the Year six times, Graf’s coaching has produced players that have earned 25 All-America awards, 96 All-Region awards and 74 players who have earned All-ACC honors.  Over the past 30 years, the Seminoles have averaged 48 wins per year and have recorded 25 seasons of 40 or more victories, 15 seasons of 50 or more victories and three seasons where the team surpassed the 60-win mark.  Graf was pegged the South Region Coach of the Year in 1986 and she and her staff earned Southeast Coaching Staff of the Year honors in 2001, 2002 and 2004.


Florida State‘s ACC dominance under Graf was never illustrated more clearly than in 1996 when 23 Seminoles were named to the ACC’s 50th Anniversary softball team. FSU players comprised 43 percent of the 53-player roster.


On April 2, 2005, Florida State University President Dr. T.K. Wetherell officially renamed the softball stadium “JoAnne Graf Field at the Seminole Softball Complex,” making her among only two active softball coaches with fields named after them.


“With a lot of hard work and determination, Coach Graf has made Seminole softball what it is today,” Wetherell said.  “I commend Coach Graf for her 30 years of service to the university and our athletics department and look forward to continuing our relationship with her as she becomes a member of our faculty.”


One of the most prolific coaches in collegiate softball, Graf will conclude her career having won 75 percent of her games (1437-478-6), including a 1218-425-6 (.740) mark in NCAA Division I play.  Florida State‘s average of 50.75 wins per year since beginning NCAA play is tops in the country.


Graf is a 1975 graduate of Florida State.  In 1992, she added “Dr.” to her name after completing her doctorate degree in athletic administration at FSU.




1979                26-15                     .634

1980                37-10                     .787

1981                54-7                       .882

1982                56-10                     .848

1983                46-11                     .807

1984                41-5-2                    .875

1985                50-12-2                  .797

1986                42- 7                      .857

1987                50-14                     .781

1988                44-14                     .759

1989                39-14                     .736

1990                47-16                     .750

1991                62-12                     .838

1992                63-9                       .875

1993                52-9                       .852

1994                50-19                     .724

1995                58-15                     .795

1996                51-21                     .708

1997                45-19-1                  .700

1998                51-21                     .708

1999                40-25-1                  .614

2000                51-27                     .654

2001                58-12                     .829

2002                55-20                     .733

2003                46-33                     .807

2004                62-12                     .838

2005                35-28                     .556

2006                44-30                     .681

2007                44-25                     .638

2008                38-28                     .576                      

Career           1437-478-6              .750


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