Former University of Maryland coach Gary Williams, a Collingswood native, will be inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame in November.
Collingswood High grad and native Gary Williams, who coached the University of Maryland to the NCAA men's basketball championship in 2002, is being inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in November.
The announcement came Tuesday and among the list of individuals joining Williams in the Class of 2014 will be fellow former NCAA champions Grant Hill (Duke) and Darrell Griffith (Louisville). Also being enshrined will be two-time national college player of the year Shaquille O'Neal (LSU), former LSU coach Dale Brown, NAIA star Zelmo Beaty (Prairie View A&M) and contributors Howard Garfinkel, the founder of Five-Star Basketball Camp, and Glenn Wilkes Sr., long-time coach at Stetson and prolific author of basketball coaching books.
Williams, who turned 69 years old earlier in March, also was a head coach at Ohio State (1986-89), Boston College (1982-86) and American University (1978-82) before his 22-year tenure at Maryland where he led the Terrapins to 14 appearances in the NCAA Tournament, including a streak of 11 straight. Williams' Terps reached the Sweet 16 seven times, the Final Four twice, and went 32-4 in 2002 en route to the national title. In what was a somewhat surprising move, Williams retired from the coaching ranks in May, 2011, and on Jan. 26, 2012, Maryland honored Williams by renaming the playing surface at the Comcast Center "Gary Willams Court."
Williams, who played basketball at Collingswood, went on to play point guard at Maryland and was the team captain in 1967. He graduated from Maryland in 1968 then became the head coach at Woodrow Wilson High in Camden where he led the Tigers to their only Group 4 State title in 1970. It was the second of four boys' basketball state championships in school history. Williams left Wilson to become an assistant basketball coach and head soccer coach at Lafayette College (Pa.) in 1972.
Current Temple University coach Fran Dunphy was an assistant to Williams at American University.
The Class of 2014 will be inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame Sunday, November 23, 2014, at the Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland in Kansas City as part of a three-day celebration of college basketball. Tickets will go on sale beginning in September. For more information, follow @CBHOF on Twitter or visit www.collegebasketballhalloffame.com.
The Hall of Fame is located in the College Basketball Experience (CBE), a world-class entertainment facility adjacent to Sprint Center in Kansas City. The CBE Hall of Fame Classic will take place November 24-25 at Sprint Center. The four teams participating are Alabama, Arizona State, Iowa State and Maryland. Tickets for the Classic are available now and can be purchased through www.axs.com, www.cbehalloffameclassic.com, by phone at 1-888-929-7849 or in person at Sprint Center Box Office.
Here's the official press release from the University of Maryland:
And here's the official National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame press release: