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Tarkanian a finalist for induction into basketball hall of fame


Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Former UNLV head coach Jerry Tarkanian watches as the Runnin’ Rebels take on UNR Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013 at the Thomas & Mack. UNLV won the game 66-54.

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Former UNLV basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian is one of 12 finalists to be considered for induction this year into the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame.

Annoucement of the finalists was made Friday in Houston during NBA All-Star Weekend activities.

“We are proud to share an incredible group of finalists for the Class of 2013 – a distinct list of coaches and players who excelled at many levels of basketball,” said Jerry Colangelo, chairman of the hall’s board of governors. “It will be a difficult decision for the Honors Committee to select the final class members from this prestigious group of individuals, each of whom has given so much to the game.”

The class of 2013 will be unveiled during the NCAA Final Four in April.

This year’s list includes six first-time finalists: five-time NBA all-star Tim Hardaway, three-time National Coach of the Year Sylvia Hatchell, two-time NBA Championship coach Tom Heinsohn, nine-time NBA all-star Gary Payton, five-time WNBA all-star Dawn Staley and six-time NBA all-star Mitch Richmond. Previous finalists included again this year for consideration are four-time NBA all-star Maurice Cheeks, four-time NBA all-star Spencer Haywood, four-time NBA all-star Bernard King, five-time NCAA Final Four coach Guy Lewis, six-time NCAA Final Four coach Rick Pitino and Tarkanian.

Here’s what the Hall of Fame said about Tarkanian:

“Known as one of the most passionate coaches in the game of basketball, Tarkanian recorded 990 wins during his career with an 81% winning percentage that included leading the University of Nevada-Las Vegas to four NCAA Final Four appearances (1977, 1987, 1990 and 1991) and the 1990 NCAA Championship. During his career, he led three different schools to NCAA Tournament appearances (UNLV, Fresno State and Long Beach State), including 21 post season appearances, 14 NCAA tournaments, 13 Sweet Sixteen appearances, seven Elite Eights, 17 conference championships and four 30-plus win seasons. Tarkanian is a four-time National Coach of the Year (1977 Kodak; 1983 UPI; 1984, 1990 Basketball Times). At the junior college level, he still owns the highest winning percentage of all-time at .891. He has coached 44 future NBA prospects including 12 First Round draft picks. Off the court, he was the recipient of the Roy Campanella Humanitarian Award and the Dream a Dream Foundation Inspiration Award – the only basketball coach to receive the award.”

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  1. It's about time for Jerry Tarkanian! Take away the name and just look at the numbers, and the guy is already in the Hall of Fame.

  2. I'm sure UNLV will announce something tomorrow during the SDSU game.

    Something I did not know, but read after viewing Naismith article on nominees:


    Tark the Shark has the highest winning percentage of all time at the JC level- .891.