Athletics renames softball stadium to honor Carol Hutchins

U-M athletic director Warde Manuel and Carol Hutchins

The University of Michigan Athletic Department honored the career of retired softball coach Carol Hutchins by renaming its softball stadium in her honor. The Board of Regents voted in March 2023 to designate the home of U-M’s softball program as Alumni Field at Carol Hutchins Stadium.

The venue was constructed in 1982 as Varsity Diamond, renamed Alumni Field in 1992, and incorporated into the Wilpon Baseball and Softball Complex in 2007 through numerous upgrades and added amenities. It will remain part of the Wilpon Complex, located near the Donald R. Shepherd Softball Center. “I cannot think of a better way to recognize Carol Hutchins’s contributions to the University of Michigan community, to the game of softball and to women’s athletics than to rename the venue that she put on the map,” said Warde Manuel, Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics.

Hutchins, who in 2022 completed her 39th overall season as a head coach — 38 of them at U-M — is the winningest coach in NCAA softball history, with a career record of 1,707-555-5 and a winning percentage of .755. She guided U-M to the 2005 NCAA championship after a 65-7 season, becoming the first program east of the Mississippi River to capture the national title, highlighting a career that included 22 Big Ten Conference championships, 10 Big Ten Tournament crowns, 29 NCAA Tournament appearances and 12 Women’s College World Series appearances.

Hutchins reclaimed the top spot as the NCAA’s all-time winningest softball coach on February 25, 2022, with a 3-0 win against Northern Kentucky to pass Arizona’s Mike Candrea’s record of 1,674 career wins. She also is the winningest coach — male or female — in Michigan Athletics history.