April 12, 2007
SEATTLE - Former University of Washington coach Marv Harshman won 246 games during his 14-year tenure as the Huskies men's basketball coach and his career mark of 654 wins ranks among the 25 highest totals for a single coach in college basketball history. More importantly, however, are the numerous contributions he made to the UW, the Pacific Northwest and the game of college basketball.
Last night, at the annual season-ending Husky men's basketball banquet, Washington athletic director Todd Turner and current men's basketball coach Lorenzo Romar revealed that the North Gym in the Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Arena will be renamed "Marv Harshman Court" in honor of the former Husky mentor.
"I am very pleased with the fact that the basketball court was my place to teach," said Harshman, who learned of the honor at last night's banquet. "When I retired, people used to ask me what I would like to be remembered for. Without giving it much thought, I said I would like to be remembered as a teacher because I felt that was maybe the thing I did the best and that I enjoyed the most."
A formal ceremony will take place in the fall and the facility will feature modest changes in order to appropriately display its new name.
"This is a fitting tribute to Marv Harshman who, through his teaching of the game and the values that it espouses, changed the lives of hundreds of Husky basketball players during his long tenure as the UW's head coach," said Turner. "His classroom was the basketball court and it is a basketball classroom that should and will bear his name. His impact on the lives of his players will now forever be acknowledged at the University of Washington."
Romar, who played for Harshman at the UW during the 1979 and 1980 seasons, provided a special acknowledgement of his mentor's influence on him as a player, a coach and as a person.
"I can't tell you how many stories I hear from coaches across the country about how good a coach Marv Harshman was," said Romar. "One of the reasons I decided to coach was due to how Coach Harshman conducted himself and how he had an influence on me. I felt that if Coach Harshman can have that type of an influence on me, then somehow I can go on and have and impact on someone else's life in a similar way."
Harshman, who will turn 90 on October 4, coached in 1,090 college games, the ninth-most in NCAA history, as the head coach at Washington, Pacific Lutheran University and Washington State University. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame and served as a stint as the president of the National Association of Basketball Coaches.
He concluded his career with consecutive Pacific-10 Conference championships in 1984 and 1985 and was inducted into the Pac-10 Hall of Champions in March, 2003.
A 1942 graduate of Pacific Lutheran University, Harshman is a Puget Sound native. He graduated from Lake Stevens High School before becoming a two-time All-America selection for the Lutes. He earned a degree in biological science then joined the U.S. Navy. He began coaching at his alma mater in 1946 and compiled a 241-121 record over the next 13 seasons. He then spent 13 seasons at WSU, where he registered a 155-181 mark from 1959-71 before moving back home to take over the Washington Program.