Tarkanian A Finalist For Naismith Hall Of Fame

Feb. 21, 2013

LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - Former UNLV men's basketball head coach Jerry Tarkanian is one of 12 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2013.

Tarkanian received enough votes from the nine-member Board of Trustees to advance to the final stage of voting. To advance, a candidate needed to be on a minimum of seven of the nine ballots

To gain induction, candidates must now receive at least 18 votes from the 24-member Honors Committee. The 2013 class will be announced April 8 at the Final Four in Atlanta. The Hall of Fame induction weekend will be Sept. 6-8 in Springfield, Mass.

Tarkanian, 82, is making his fourth bid to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame, but has never advanced beyond the initial vote until now.

During 19 years at the helm of the Runnin' Rebels (1973-1992), Tarkanian shaped an uptempo and aggressive style that captivated fans in Las Vegas, and across the nation. Posting a 509-105 (.829) record at UNLV, he took four teams to the NCAA Final Four, winning the national championship in 1990 in a 103-73 runaway over Duke - the highest margin of victory in NCAA tournament championship game history. He had the court at the Thomas & Mack Center named in his honor on Nov. 26, 2005.

A member of UNLV's athletic hall of fame, Tarkanian is one of only two coaches to see his number retired. Known to fans as the towel-chewing "Tark the Shark," he never had a losing season while at UNLV.

At the school, Tarkanian coached 13 players recognized as All-Americans a total of 20 times. He won 11 regular season conference championships, seven conference tournament titles and made 12 NCAA Tournament appearances, including a string of nine straight. He was an eight-time conference coach of the year and was named UPI's National Coach of the Year in 1983.

Over 31 seasons as a Division I head coach, Tarkanian amassed 729 wins, with just 201 losses for a career winning percentage of .784, ranking 10th all-time among NCAA Division I men's basketball coaches.

Tarkanian was the second fastest coach to reach 700 career wins in NCAA history, behind only Kentucky's Adolph Rupp. Overall, he won 900 games in a 38-year college coaching career (including junior college).

Tarkanian was one of 31 nominees from the North American category. A maximum of seven will come from that category.

Joining Tarkanian as a finalist are Las Vegas residents and former Seattle SuperSonics stars Spencer Haywood and Gary Payton, Louisville coach Rick Pitino, former Houston coach Guy V. Lewis, former Boston Celtics coach Tom Heinsohn, former NBA stars Bernard King, Maurice Cheeks, Tim Hardaway and Mitch Richmond, former women's star Dawn Staley and North Carolina women's coach Sylvia Hatchell.

The Hall also announced inductees for its Class of 2013 from other categories. Selected for direct election were Richie Guerin (Veterans committee), Roger Brown (ABA), Oscar Schmidt (International), E.B. Henderson (African-American Pioneer) and Russ Granik (Contributor). The Hall's Curt Gowdy Media Awards were also announced as John Feinstein (print) and Eddie Doucette (broadcast) were honored. Former college coach George Raveling was also honored with the Hall's Lifetime Achievement Award.

The full announcement from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame may be found here: http://www.hoophall.com/news/2013/2/15/naismith-memorial-basketball-hall-of-fame-announces-12-final.html