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Head Coach Jim Calhoun

Having completed his 22nd season as head coach at the University of Connecticut and his 36th year as a collegiate head coach, Jim Calhoun has unquestionably stood the test of time in establishing himself as perhaps the greatest program builder in college basketball history.

Jim Calhoun’s coaching success story includes winning two NCAA National Championships (1999, 2004) at Connecticut, passing the elite 700-win plateau, and earning basketball’s highest honor, election into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a member of the Class of 2005. Coach Calhoun is also a member of the Founding Class of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame, announced in November of 2006.

The beginning of what has become one of college basketball’s greatest coaching achievements—transforming the University of Connecticut into one of the nation’s elite programs—was launched in May of 1986 when Jim Calhoun was named head coach.

More than twenty years later, UConn Basketball sits atop the college basketball landscape with a pair of NCAA National Championships, an NIT Championship, recognition as the most successful program in the history of the Big East Conference with a record-setting 16 league titles, and annual acknowledgement as one of America’s truly outstanding college programs.

In addition, the Connecticut Basketball program is now led by a Hall of Fame coach.

In September of 2005, with some 60 of his former players in attendance, Jim Calhoun’s four decade body of work as one of college basketball’s greatest coaches was formally rewarded when the UConn coach was enshrined as a coach into the Basketball Hall of Fame.

In April of 2004, Jim Calhoun cemented his place among the all-time collegiate coaching greats and as a future member of the Hall of Fame by leading UConn to the 2004 national title. In directing Connecticut to its second NCAA National Championship in a six-year span, Jim Calhoun became, at the time, only the second coach to win multiple NCAA titles since the tournament field expanded to 64 teams in 1985.

On March 2, 2005, Jim Calhoun joined an elite club, becoming one of only 19 coaches in NCAA Division I basketball history to reach the 700-win plateau when UConn beat Georgetown, 83-64.

Within a six-day period in April 2005, Jim Calhoun was honored with two career awards. On April 4, 2005, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame introduced Coach Calhoun as a Class of 2005 Hall of Fame enshrinee. On April 9, 2005, Coach Calhoun became just the seventh recipient of the prestigious John R. Wooden "Legends of Coaching Award" presented by the Los Angeles Athletic Club. Previous winners of the award include Hall of Fame coaches Dean Smith, Mike Krzyzewski and Lute Olson.

In his 36th season as a head coach on the NCAA Division I collegiate level, Jim Calhoun’s overall collegiate head coaching record is 774-337. That includes a 248-137 record in 14 seasons as head coach at Northeastern (MA) University and a 526-200 mark in his 22 seasons at Connecticut.

In his time at Connecticut, Jim Calhoun has compiled a stunning 48-16 overall record in national postseason tournament competition (36-12 in NCAA play, 12-4 in NIT play). His 36 NCAA wins at UConn, all achieved since 1990, far outdistances the entire total of four NCAA victories recorded at Connecticut before Coach Calhoun took over the Husky basketball program in the spring of 1986.

Including the 2007-08 season, Jim Calhoun has led UConn to 15 NCAA bids in the past 19 years. Under Coach Calhoun’s direction, UConn has a stunning 25-4 in NCAA First and Second Round competition since 1990. The Huskies have earned 11 NCAA Sweet 16 berths in the past 18 years, seven Elite Eight appearances, two NCAA Final Four trips and two National Championships.

Under Coach Calhoun, UConn has captured 16 BIG EAST Championships, ten regular season crowns and six tournament titles. The Huskies are 28-16 in BIG EAST Tournament play under Calhoun.

Even before capturing the 2004 NCAA title, Connecticut basketball under head coach Jim Calhoun had achieved a unique "double", winning the 1999 NCAA Division I National Championships as well as the 1988 National Invitation Tournament (NIT) Championship.

When he arrived at Connecticut as the 17th head coach of men’s basketball on May 15, 1986, Jim Calhoun immediately began to chart a new course for success. He promised to "do it the right way, with no short cuts". He noted he wanted to establish a program at UConn that would annually be called one of the top programs in the nation.

Mission accomplished.

One collegiate basketball writer, authoring an article on Connecticut basketball for a national publication, said it best when he noted, "Bringing the UConn program to this point from where it was when he took over is nothing short of miraculous".

Jim Calhoun ranks No. 9 all-time in NCAA career victories with 39 (36-11 at Connecticut, 3-5 at Northeastern). Coach Calhoun is 39-16 in overall NCAA play (with two NCAA titles).

Jim Calhoun’s overall career record for national postseason tournament competition is a remarkable 51-20 (39-16 in NCAA play, 12-4 in NIT play). He has coached in the NCAA Tournament 19 times and in the NIT five times (including winning the 1988 NIT title).

Much like his success at Connecticut, Jim Calhoun’s performance as head coach at Northeastern (MA) University in Boston for 14 seasons was nothing short of sensational. He developed a program from Division II status to a nationally-recognized squad which became a perennial NCAA Division I tournament team. At NU, Jim Calhoun won 20 or more games in five of his last six seasons, chalked up a brilliant 135-47 record during that span, and earned five NCAA Division I tournament berths.

His final three years at Northeastern resulted in NCAA automatic bids each season and a three-year mark of 75-19.

At Northeastern, Jim Calhoun’s teams averaged 17.9 wins per season. He was a three-time New England "Coach of the Year" and a three-time Kodak District I "Coach of the Year".

In leaving Northeastern in 1986, Coach Calhoun left perhaps the most talented team in the school’s history, along with a first round NBA draft pick in senior Reggie Lewis, who later became captain of the Boston Celtics before his untimely death during the summer of 1993.

As was the case at Northeastern, Jim Calhoun’s success at producing top-flight collegiate stars, who also excel at the professional basketball level, is an annual happening at Connecticut. A total of 24 former UConn stars that played for Coach Calhoun have been part of the National Basketball Association (NBA). They include: Clifford Robinson (New Jersey Nets/Golden State Warriors/Detroit Pistons/Phoenix Suns/Portland Trail Blazers), Tate George (New Jersey Nets), Chris Smith (Minnesota Timberwolves), Scott Burrell (New Jersey Nets/Chicago Bulls/Charlotte Hornets), Donyell Marshall (Seattle Sonics/Cleveland Cavaliers/Toronto Raptors/Chicago Bulls/Utah Jazz/Golden State Warriors), Donny Marshall (New Jersey Nets/Cleveland Cavaliers), Kevin Ollie (Philadelphia 76ers/Cleveland Cavaliers/Seattle Sonics/Milwaukee Bucks/Indiana Pacers/Chicago Bulls/New Jersey Nets/Orlando Magic/Sacramento Kings/Dallas Mavericks), Ray Allen (Boston Celtics/Seattle Sonics/Milwaukee Bucks), Travis Knight (New York Knicks/Boston Celtics/Los Angeles Lakers), Doron Sheffer (Los Angeles Clippers), Richard Hamilton (Detroit Pistons/Washington Wizards), Khalid El-Amin (Chicago Bulls/Dallas Mavericks/Miami Heat), Jake Voskuhl (Milwaukee Bucks/Charlotte Bobcats/Phoenix Suns/Chicago Bulls), Kevin Freeman (New Jersey Nets), Ricky Moore (Charlotte Hornets/Detroit Pistons), Caron Butler (Washington Wizards/Los Angeles Lakers/Miami Heat), Emeka Okafor (Charlotte Bobcats), Ben Gordon (Chicago Bulls), Charlie Villanueva (Milwaukee Bucks/Toronto Raptors), Hilton Armstrong (New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets), Josh Boone (New Jersey Nets), Denham Brown (Seattle Sonics), Rudy Gay (Memphis Grizzlies) and Marcus Williams (New Jersey Nets).

Thirteen of those Connecticut stars are listed on NBA regular season rosters in 2007-08, more than any other school in the country. For the past two seasons, Ray Allen, Richard Hamilton and Caron Butler all appeared in the NBA All-Star Game. UConn was the only college in the nation represented by three players in those contests. This was the third straight season the University of Connecticut was represented in the NBA All-Star game by multiple former Husky standouts. Allen has now been an all-star eight times in his career, Hamilton three times and Butler twice. Three UConn players have also been members of NBA Championship teams (Scott Burrell with the Chicago Bulls in 1998, Travis Knight with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2000, Richard Hamilton with the Detroit Pistons in 2004).

A former All-New England player at American International College in Springfield, MA, Jim Calhoun graduated from AIC in 1968 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology. At AIC, he lettered three years while leading the Yellow Jacket basketball team in scoring as a junior and senior. He captained his alma mater in his senior year and left the school as the fourth all-time leading scorer along with helping the school earn an NCAA Division II playoff berth. He is a member of the AIC Athletic Hall of Fame and in the summer of 1994 earned the prestigious distinction of being elected to serve as a member of the American International College Board of Trustees. In the spring of 2000, Jim Calhoun served as the main commencement speaker at AIC’s 115th graduation exercises and received an honorary degree from his alma mater.

Jim Calhoun began his coaching career at AIC, serving as an assistant basketball coach from 1966-68. After one year as head coach of basketball at Old Lyme High School in Connecticut, and one year as head coach of Westport High School in Westport, MA, Jim Calhoun moved on to become head coach at Dedham High School in Massachusetts. He quickly rebuilt the program, fashioning a 21-1 record in 1971-72 and seeing his club advance to the State Division I semi-finals.

In October of 1972, he moved into the collegiate coaching ranks at Northeastern University in Boston. In the years to follow, the Northeastern Huskies would dominate the ECAC North Atlantic Conference under his guidance. Northeastern won the league’s regular season championship four times and shared the top spot two other times in seven years of conference play. NU also won five of the seven league tournaments and Coach Calhoun’s record against conference competition in his career at NU was 74-13. While at Northeastern, he was inducted into the NU Sports Hall of Fame.

In addition to his busy schedule as head coach of the Connecticut basketball program, Jim Calhoun and his family are heavily involved in a number of regional and national charitable and educational efforts.

In November of 1998, Jim Calhoun and his wife Pat began a wide- ranging commitment to the cardiology program at the University of Connecticut Health Center, establishing the Calhoun Cardiology Research Fund with a $125,000 gift. In 1999, the Jim Calhoun Celebrity Classic Golf Tournament was launched and during the past eight years more than $2.75 million has been raised in support of the Jim and Pat Calhoun Cardiology Research Endowment Fund.

In recognition of the dedication and commitment of Jim Calhoun and his family to cardiology research, the entire cardiology program at the University of Connecticut Health Center has been named the "Pat and Jim Calhoun Cardiology Center". A formal naming ceremony recognizing the on-going work of the Calhoun family was held in the spring of 2004.

In 2006, Jim and Pat Calhoun became actively involved with raising public awareness and research funding for Autism Speaks. The effort seeks to expand services for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ADS) and their families.

Since 1999, the Jim Calhoun Holiday Food Drive has supported food assistance agencies that serve the State of Connecticut. Nearly $1 million has been raised to help families in need throughout Connecticut and the food drive culminates each year with Jim Calhoun, his family, and his players personally delivering meals to hundreds of families in the Hartford area.

In both 2003 and 2004, Jim Calhoun served as celebrity host of Coaches versus Cancer events called "Hoops For Hope". The black-tie galas raised in excess of $400,000 for the American Cancer Society.

In June of 2007, The Big Y Jim Calhoun Cancer Challenge Ride celebrated its first year as an annual statewide event to benefit The Carole and Ray Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Connecticut Health Center and Coaches vs. Cancer, a program established in 1993 by the American Cancer Society. The ride raised over $225,000 in the fight against cancer.

For the past 13 years, Jim Calhoun has served as Honorary Chairman of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, helping generate in excess of $4.5 million to fund diabetes research.

Jim and Pat Calhoun have a long-standing involvement with the Franciscan Life Center, counseling and education center operated in Meriden, CT by the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist. The Calhoun family has been involved annually in fund-raising activities by the Franciscan Sisters. Jim Calhoun has been honored with the "Saint Francis Award" for his dedication to Christian values and outstanding athletic achievements and in 1998 the Franciscan Sisters dedicated an outdoor basketball area, "Calhoun’s Court", in honor of the UConn head coach at the Franciscan Life Center in Meriden.

Coach Calhoun has also served as an Honorary Chairperson/Director for several other charitable programs including the Ronald McDonald House Kids Classic Golf Tournament, the Ray of Hope Foundation Golf Tournament, the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center and Children’s Miracle Network, and the "Character Counts" program in the state of Connecticut.

In 2004, Jim Calhoun was the first recipient of an award by the Swim Across The Sound Prostate Cancer Institute and he now serves as the Honorary Chairman for that group’s fund-raising efforts.

In October of 2005, the University of Connecticut Alumni Association recognized Jim Calhoun’s two decades of outstanding contributions at UConn by honoring Coach Calhoun with its "Honorary Alumni Award".

In the fall of 1999, Jim Calhoun completed work on a book. "Dare To Dream-Connecticut Basketball’s Remarkable March To The National Championship" is a first person account by Coach Calhoun of his life as a college coach with specific focus on the 1998-99 season. Working with Coach Calhoun on the book was Leigh Montville, a former senior writer at Sports Illustrated and a UConn graduate.

A graduate of Braintree (MA) High School, Jim Calhoun was a three-sport letter winner in football, basketball and baseball. As a senior captain, he earned All-Bay State League honors in football and basketball. His hometown of Braintree has bestowed a singular honor on Coach Calhoun, naming outdoor basketball courts in a city facility "Calhoun Park". He continues to return to Braintree to speak and conduct basketball clinics for area youths.

Born May 10, 1942 in Braintree, MA, Jim Calhoun and his wife Pat live in Pomfret, Connecticut. They have two sons, James and Jeffrey. James and his wife Jennifer live in Pasadena, California with daughters, Emily (born 3/5/99) and Katie (born 12/29/00) and a son Sam (born 6/8/03). Jeffrey and his wife Amy live in Glastonbury, Connecticut with daughters Avery (born 1/26/02), Reese (born 4/7/03) and Peyton (born 3/26/05).

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