Sad news shocked the basketball scene. Fresno State legendary coach Jerry the Shark Tarkanian, swam away forever. Jerry Esther Tarkanian who won over 700 games in his career, passed away last Wednesday 11th, after battling in the hospital with a respiratory ailment and infection. He was 84 years old. The shark was known for revolutionizing the college game at UNLV with the Running Rebels’ pressing defense and fast-paced offence. His exciting game lead the Running Rebels four times to the Final Four of the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament, winning the national championship in 1990.
Son of Armenian immigrants, Tarkanian was born in Euclid, Ohio in 1930 and attended Fresno State, where he played as backup guard for the Bulldogs in 1954- 1955. He began his career coaching in California, starting with San Joaquin Memorial High School in Fresno. He then moved to Antelope Valley Joint Union High School and later to Redlands High School. He coached college basketball for 31 seasons and over five decades at Riverside, Pasadena and Long Beach State, but spent the majority of his career coaching UNLV. He lurked the court for the last time on 2002, with an overall 729-201 record. But The Shark didn’t swim on still water all the time. He battled accusations of rule violations from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), ending with three universities suffering penalties. However he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013. Jerry “The Shark” Tarkanian’s legacy will be honored by UNLV’s men’s basketball team with a commemorative patch on their jerseys the remainder of this season.
Sports and gambling business with sadness farewells Jerry Tarkanian and sends all love and support to his friends and family in their difficult time.
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