Tiger Basketball To Hold Bartow Banner Day Dec. 22
Dec. 8, 2009
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Tiger Nation loves the history and tradition of Memphis basketball, and one of the program's great coaches will be honored at FedExForum Dec. 22. Former head coach Gene Bartow was inducted into the Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame Nov. 22, and a month later, Tiger fans will get the chance to recognize Bartow's honor during halftime ceremonies of the Memphis-Southeast Missouri State contest.
The Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame is located in Kansas City, Mo., where the Nov. 22 induction ceremonies were held. Bartow was joined in the 2009 induction class by Larry Bird, Travis Grant, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Wayman Tisdale, Jud Heathcote, Walter Byers and Bill Wall.
Bartow coached at Memphis from 1970-74 and compiled an 83-32 record for an impressive 72.2 winning percentage. He posted winning ledgers each of his four seasons in the Bluff City, including back-to-back 20-win campaigns in 1971-72 (21-7 record) and 1972-73 (25-6). Bartow guided the Tigers to consecutive Missouri Valley Conference titles in 1972 and 1973 and directed the program to three-straight postseason appearances from 1972-74 (1 NCAA, 2 NIT).
In the 1973 postseason, Bartow took the Memphis program and Tiger Nation on a magical ride to the NCAA championship game. The Tigers defeated South Carolina, Kansas State and Providence en route to the title game, where they fell to the UCLA Bruins 87-66. For his efforts, Bartow was named the 1973 National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) National Coach of the Year.
During his time as the Memphis head coach, Bartow coached five players that earned All-America distinction. He also coached four All-Missouri Valley performers and two Missouri Valley Players of the Year in Larry Finch and Larry Kenon. Bartow was named the Missouri Valley Coach of the Year in 1972.
In his 34 years as a head coach at the collegiate level, Bartow had stints at Central Missouri State (1961-64), Valparaiso (1964-70), Illinois (1974-75), UCLA (1975-77) and UAB (1977-95) in addition to his time at Memphis.
Bartow is president of Hoop, LP, which owns the Memphis Grizzlies of the National Basketball Association.