Good Sports: Jerry Tarkanian

August 30, 2013 5:46:27 PM PDT
A former Fresno State basketball player, who is much better known as a former bulldog coach is set to receive the honor of a lifetime next weekend. It is an achievement many Red Wavers say is at least a decade overdue, Jerry Tarkanian will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame September 8 in Springfield Massachusetts.

But after a recent hospital stay Coach Tarkanian is not quite able to express just how much the honor means to him. However, Danny Tarkanian, Jerry Tarkanian's son, can express how much the honor means to this father.

"When you look at my dad's record, he won bigger than any coach in all of college basketball at smaller schools with less resources than any other coach in the country," Danny Tarkanian said. "The fact that my dad was able to win at those schools I think speaks volumes by itself, much more than induction into the Hall of Fame does."

Coach Tarkanian was in Fresno last weekend for a tribute to his career and Hall of Fame Honor

"One of the first things the new president does is want to meet with my father when he's here, that was wonderful. Then he gave him a really nice plaque and was very encouraging with the words he said," Danny Tarkanian said.

First Tarkanian celebrated his honor at Fresno State and then later at one of his favorite local hangouts, the Elbow Room. He was shown the same love and respect that made him one of Fresno's most popular figures in the late 1990s, when his bulldog basketball teams had Selland Arena rockin'.

"It was a great event," Coach Tarkanian said.

"It all comes downtown what makes Fresno and Fresno State so special are the people that reside in this community. The incredible friendship and support they provided my father, it hasn't been matched at anywhere my dad's coached. Not even close at UNLV or long beach state," Danny Tarkanian said.

Seven hundred and forty-eight college basketball wins, four trips to the final four, and one national championship later. Coach Tarkanian will join the sport's elite, representing the Central Valley on the national stage.

"There is no one that I know of that loves Fresno State more than my father. From the time that he went to college here, how much that just loves this community and the people," Danny Tarkanian said.

Jerry Tarkanian, a Fresno State grad, former bulldog player and coach, enshrined as one of the best ever in his field.


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