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Marian Washington
  • Finished her coaching career at KU with a record of 560-363
  • Assistant coach for the 1996 Gold Medal winning Olympic Women’s Basketball team
  • Member of three other Hall of Fames
Washington, Marian
Inducted 2006

Born: August 26, 1946 – West Chester, Pennsylvania

Graduated: Henderson High School (West Chester, Pa.), 1965; West Chester (Pa.) State College, 1970; MS – University of Kansas, 1976


Marian E. Washington was the face of women’s basketball at the University of Kansas for over 30 years, leading the Jayhawks to the NCAA Tournament 11 times and the AIAW Tournament (pre-NCAA) another four times.

Playing Career

Washington excelled in seven sports while in high school and was a two-time AAU All-American at West Chester State. She helped lead the Golden Rams to a national title in 1969, the first-ever in the history of collegiate women’s basketball and was also an outstanding track and field athlete and handball player.

Coaching Career at KU

Washington led the Jayhawks to 17 seasons of 20 or more victories and seven conference and six conference tournament championships, finishing her career at KU with a record of 560 wins and 363 losses for a .607 winning percentage.


But, Marian Washington was more than just wins and losses. She not only pioneered the women’s athletic program at KU, but also paved the way for black women in athletics. She was the first of two black women to play on a United States national team (1969-71); the first to serve as the head coach for a U.S. international team (1982 U.S. Select) and the first to coach on an Olympic women’s basketball staff (assistant on 1996 gold-medal winning team).


Washington was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004 and is also a member of the West Chester State University and University of Kansas Athletic Halls of Fame.


Click here to see Marian's Kansas Sports Hall of Fame induction speech