One of the truly shameful injustices in all of college basketball is Bob Huggins’ absence in the Basketball Hall of Fame. Each WVU game, announcers wonder aloud, “How can Bob Huggins not be a Hall of Famer?” After all, he has 800 career wins, has led two different schools to the Final Four, and has won 70% of his games over the course of his illustrious 36 year career.
Huggins is the 7th all time winningest coach in Division I college basketball history and has the 4th most wins of active coaches, behind only Mike Krzyzewski, Jim Boeheim, and Roy Williams. He will pass Adolph Rupp and Dean Smith on the all time list this year.
Huggins is once again on the list of eligible candidates for the 2020 season and this year’s class is perhaps one of the most spectacular ever. There are several high-profile first-time nominees including Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, Chris Bosh, Shawn Marion, Michael Finley, in addition to many other previously nominated greats, including George Karl, Mark Jackson, Diggers Phelps and, of course, Bob Huggins.
According to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame website, “A press conference announcing the Finalists from the North American and Women’s committee for the Class of 2020 will be held during NBA All-Star Weekend, which is scheduled for Friday, February 14th in Chicago, Illinois. The entire Class of 2020, including those selected by the direct elect committees, will be unveiled during the NCAA Final Four in Atlanta, Georgia in early April.”
The complete list of male North American nominees includes: Rick Adelman (COA), Fletcher Arritt (COA)*, Johnny Bach (COA), Chauncey Billups (PLA), Chris Bosh (PLA)*, Kobe Bryant (PLA)*, Rick Byrd (COA), Muggsy Bogues (PLA), Irv Brown (REF), Jim Burch (REF), Marcus Camby (PLA), Tim Duncan (PLA)*, Mark Eaton (PLA), Dale Ellis (PLA), Hugh Evans (REF), Michael Finley (PLA)*, Steve Fisher (COA), Cotton Fitzsimmons (COA), Kevin Garnett (PLA)*, Richard Hamilton (PLAY), Tim Hardaway (PLA), Ed Hightower (REF), Bob Huggins (COA), Mark Jackson (PLA), Herman Johnson (COA)*, Marques Johnson (PLA), George Karl (COA), Gene Keady (COA), Ken Kern (COA) Shawn Marion (PLA)*, Rollie Massimino (COA), Bob McKillop (COA)*, Danny Miles (COA), Steve Moore (COA)*m Dick Motta (COA), Jake O’Donnell (REF), Digger Phelps (COA), Lamont Robinson (PLA), Bo Ryan (COA), Bob Saulsbury (COA), Norm Sloan (COA)*, Eddie Sutton (COA), Rudy Tomjanovich (COA), Ben Wallace (PLA), Chris Webber (PLA), Willie West (COA), Buck Williams (PLA)*, and Jay Wright (COA).
Although this is a long and illustrious list of great former players and coaches, there are few more deserving than Bob Huggins. Enough is enough, the West Virginia Head Coach should finally be inducted into the Hall of Fame class of 2020 and given the respect that he’s earned during an absolutely incredible career.