Harry Statham Named Inaugural Member of SCB National Hall of Fame Class of 2022

September 19, 2021

Kansas City, MO – Small College Basketball and the National Hall of Fame Committee are proud to announce Harry Statham as the inaugural member of the National Hall of Fame Class of 2022. During his 52 year career at McKendree University, Coach Statham accumulated 1,122 wins. The 1,122 wins is the second-most by any men’s or women’s basketball head coach at a four year college or university. Small College Basketball Founder John McCarthy had this to say about Coach Statham:

 

"Coach Statham was such an obvious choice for the Small College Basketball National Hall of Fame that we decided to make the announcement during this special gathering by his former players to honor the man.  Since he recently became eligible, he will be first-ballot Hall of Fame Inductee.  Not only did Coach Statham become the winningest coach in college basketball history during his tenure at McKendree, he became one of the most admired and respected coaches in America - in any sport, at any level - because of his class and his character."

 

Coach Statham took over the McKendree men’s basketball program prior to the 1966-67 season. Over his 52-year career, Statham’s teams averaged nearly 23 wins per season. Statham led the Bearcats to post season play 40 times, including 15 trips to the NAIA national men’s basketball championship. During his tenure, 70 players received post-season accolades, including ten players being named NAIA All – American. Furthermore, Statham coached three players who were drafted in the professional ranks. National Hall of Fame Committee member Gary Pine had this to say about Coach Statham:

 

"The name Harry Statham is synonymous with the NAIA and small college basketball.  He is McKendree, and is the most prevalent man in the history of that school.  His sticktoitiveness and durability are second to none, and he is to be lauded for his loyalty and passion for his school, the state of Illinois, and the game of basketball, all of which are unequal in any other man."

 

In 1998 Statham was inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame. During his career, he was named the American Midwest Conference Coach of Year eight times and NAIA District 20 Coach of the Year six times. Statham was selected as the NAIA Men’s Basketball Coach of the Year after the 2001-02 season. In 1987 Statham was inducted into the IBCA-NAIA Hall of Fame after being named NAIA-Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Men’s Basketball Coach of the Year twelve times.

 

In 2005, Statham was awarded the Guardians of the Game Leadership Award presented by the National Association of Basketball Coaches. This award is voted on by fellow head coaches. In 2006, the Lebanon City Council honored Coach Statham by renaming a roadway the Harry Statham Way on the campus of McKendree. Additionally, the McKendree University gymnasium is named after Coach Statham. In 2018, Small College Basketball named a national award in his honor: The Harry Statham Coach of Impact Award. Jim Carr, President and CEO of the NAIA, spoke about Coach Statham and his lasting impact:  


“Harry Statham was one of the best coaches we have ever had in the NAIA and, more importantly, he is a better man.  Coach Statham epitomized our Champions of Character initiative and has had a lifelong impact on hundreds of young men throughout his illustrious career.  The NAIA was fortunate to have had him in our membership and I am fortunate to call him a friend.”

 

The 2022 National Hall of Fame Class is selected by the distinguished Hall of Fame Committee

including: Steve Knight, Don Landry, Mike Lightfoot, Danny Miles, Greg Moore, Jim Nelson, Doug Palm, Roy Pickerill, Gary Pine, Jim Poteet, Butch Raymond, John Rinka, Gary Stewart and Rick Zvosec.

 

For more information regarding the Small College Basketball National Hall of Fame please head to

smallcollegebasketball.com.