Hugh Durham Approaches 1,000th Career Game

Feb. 13, 2003

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - JU basketball coach Hugh Durham is on the verge of yet another career milestone. Durham, who recently became the 10th active NCAA Division I coach to win 600 games, will become the 5th active D-I coach (17th all-time) to coach 1,000 career games on Saturday when the Dolphins host Florida Atlantic at 7 p.m. at Swisher Gymnasium. JU President David Harlow will honor Durham prior to the game for his recent 600th career victory and his 1,000th career game. The first 1,000 fans in attendance will receive a commemorative Hugh Durham print and the head coach will host a post-game autograph session at Swisher. JU also hosts UCF on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Durham is in his sixth season at Jacksonville, his 35th season overall as a collegiate head coach with a career record of 601-397 (.602). He has led the Dolphins to back-to-back 18-win seasons, the most wins in consecutive years in more than 15 years for Jacksonville, and is just 15 wins shy of becoming JU's all-time leader with 89 Division I wins (Bob Wenzel, 88). Rollie Rourke is the Dolphins' all-time winningest coach with 107 career victories, but JU was a junior college (1948-57) and an NAIA school (1957-65) during his tenure. The 65-year-old Durham is also just one season shy of having the longest tenure of any basketball coach at JU - seven seasons (Rourke 1953-60).

"You can't hang around for 1,000 games unless you have a little bit of success," says Durham, who also serves as JU's Director of Athletics. "But the best thing about being a part of college athletics for more than 40 years is the relationships with coaches, players and peers throughout the years. I've really been fortunate."

The list of accomplishments is endless for Durham, who is one if just 11 Division I coaches to lead two different schools to the NCAA Final Four (Florida State, 1972 & Georgia, 1983). He is the all-time winningest coach in the 97-year history of Georgia basketball with 297 wins and ranks first all-time at Florida State with a .708 winning percentage (230-95). Durham has led his teams to 15 postseason appearances, including eight NCAA tournament berths, and has earned five conference coach-of-the-year honors. He is also one of only three coaches to win 200 games at two different schools: Ralph Miller (Oregon & Wichita St.) and Norm Sloan (Florida & N.C. State).

A native of Louisville, Ky., Durham began his coaching career as an assistant to long-time Florida State coach Bud Kennedy in 1959. This followed a standout playing career at FSU, where he still decorates record books in a dozen different categories after scoring 1,381 points during his three-year playing career. Durham's 43-point performance against Stetson in 1957 still ranks second all-time at FSU for a single game. The Seminoles' annual Team MVP award was re-named the "Hugh Durham Most Valuable Player" award in 1999. He coached at FSU from 1966-78, before going to Georgia, where he coached from 1978-95. Durham became the Dolphins' head coach in March of 1997.