Sendek coaching Arizona State in 2009
February 22, 1963 |
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
MAC Regular Season Championship (1995)
Herbert Joseph Sendek, of Slovak descent, grew up in Pittsburgh and attended Penn Hills High School. He starred as a point guard in basketball, lettering two years, serving as team captain, and earning All-East Suburban honors. He graduated with a perfect 4.0 grade-point average and was valedictorian of the Class of 1981. Sendek's father, Herb Sr., was a teacher and basketball coach at both the high school and junior college levels.
He played college basketball at Carnegie Mellon University, where he was a three-year letterman. He graduated summa cum laude in 1985 with a bachelor's degree in industrial management and earned the Carnegie Merit Scholarship.
In 1984-85, Sendek served as an assistant coach at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh.
Sendek served as a graduate assistant coach at Providence College in 1985, then as an assistant coach at Providence from 1987 to 1989. He then served as an assistant coach at the University of Kentucky under Rick Pitino from 1989 to 1993.
In 1993, Sendek accepted his first college head coaching job, at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, succeeding Joby Wright, who left to become head coach at the University of Wyoming. In his first season, 1993–94, the Redskins (now RedHawks) posted a 19-11 record and finished second in the Mid-American Conference (MAC).
In 1994-95, Miami improved to 23-7 overall, winning the MAC championship with a 16-2 record and earning a spot in the NCAA Tournament. In the Midwest Regionals, Miami shocked Arizona 71-62, then took Virginia to overtime before falling 60-54.
In Sendek's third season at Miami, 1995–96, the team went 21-8 and finished third in the MAC. Miami earned a berth in the NIT, losing a first-round game to Fresno State, 58-57. Sendek was named the 1995 MAC Coach of the Year.
North Carolina State
After three seasons at Miami, Sendek was hired at North Carolina State in 1996, becoming the youngest head coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). He immediately improved upon the Les Robinson era, winning 17 games for the program's first winning record in six years. The Wolfpack ended the season winning eight of 11 games, advanced to the finals of the ACC Tournament, and earned a trip to the postseason in the NIT.
Sendek coached NC State to the NCAA tournament five consecutive years from 2002 until 2006 (tying the school record). He won his 100th game at NC State in 2002. In 2004, Sendek won ACC Coach of the Year and Julius Hodge, one of Sendek's most prized recruits during his NC State tenure, won the ACC Men's Basketball Player of the Year. In 2005, NC State upset defending champion Connecticut in the second round of the NCAA tournament to advance to the Sweet 16, NC State's deepest run into the tournament during Sendek's years.
Due in part to an 8–38 record against Duke and North Carolina combined with failing to win an ACC championship, fan and booster support was in steep decline. This ultimately played a factor in Sendek deciding to leave NC State for the head coaching vacancy at Arizona State University.
On April 3, 2006, Sendek accepted the head coaching job at Arizona State. While his first year record in the Pac-10 was a paltry 2–16, recruiting went well: ASU signed Jerren Shipp, a highly regarded high school guard, point guard Derek Glasser from the LA Area, and Eric Boateng, a McDonald's All-American who transferred from Duke. His second recruiting class included highly touted McDonald's All-American James Harden and point guard Jamelle McMillan (a four-star recruit and the son of former NC State Basketball star Nate McMillan).
The 2007–08 season was a great improvement over the previous season. Sendek and freshman guard James Harden led the Sun Devils to fifth place in the Pac-10 Conference, including a sweep of rival Arizona. Arizona State was rewarded with a number 1 seed in the 2008 NIT. The 2008–2009 team led by Pac-10 Player of the year Harden improved to a 25–10 record and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament.
Since the departure of Harden for the NBA, the Sun Devils program finished 2nd in the Pac-10 during the 2009–10 season in what was a weak Pac-10 Conference. That year, the conference RPI was so weak, it was the first time the 2nd place Pac-10 team didn't get an at-large invitation to the NCAA tournament. The Sun Devils instead were given a No. 1 Seed in the NIT and lost to the Jacksonville Dolphins in Tempe. With three returning seniors there were high expectations 2010–2011 season was expected to make a run at the Pac-10 Title again. However, the Sun Devils finished in last place with a record of 12–19(4–14). Some of the program's troubles could be due to the high transfer rate of recent recruits.
The 2011–12 season was anticipated to be better with the addition of newcomer and 2010–11 Arizona High School Player of the Year Jahii Carson. However, Carson failed to gain NCAA clearance to play. The season became even more troublesome as Coach Sendek dismissed his leading scorer, Keala King, from the team on January 7, 2012 for undisclosed reasons.
On March 24, 2015, Sendek was fired by Arizona State after an 18-16 record, losing to USC in the Pac-12 Tournament, and a trip to the NIT. 
Sendek is married to Melanie (Scheuer); they have three daughters.
Sendek was inducted into the Penn Hills Hall of Fame and into the East Boros Chapter of the Pennsylvania Hall of Fame.
Head coaching record
|Miami Redskins (Mid-American Conference) (1993–1996)|
|1993–94||Miami||19–11||12–6||2nd||NIT First Round|
|1994–95||Miami||23–7||16–2||1st||NCAA Second Round|
|1995–96||Miami||21–8||12–6||3rd||NIT First Round|
|Miami:||63–26 (.708)||40–14 (.741)|
|NC State Wolfpack (Atlantic Coast Conference) (1996–2006)|
|1996–97||NC State||17–15||4–12||8th||NIT Second Round|
|1997–98||NC State||17–15||5–11||8th||NIT Second Round|
|1998–99||NC State||19–14||6–10||5th||NIT Second Round|
|1999–00||NC State||20–14||6–10||6th||NIT Semifinal|
|2001–02||NC State||23–11||9–7||T–3rd||NCAA Second Round|
|2002–03||NC State||18–13||9–7||4th||NCAA First Round|
|2003–04||NC State||21–10||11–5||2nd||NCAA Second Round|
|2004–05||NC State||21–14||7–9||T–6th||NCAA Sweet Sixteen|
|2005–06||NC State||22–10||10–6||4th||NCAA Second Round|
|NC State:||191–132 (.591)||72–88 (.450)|
|Arizona State (Pacific-10/12 Conference) (2006–2015)|
|2007–08||Arizona State||21–12||9–9||5th||NIT Quarterfinal|
|2008–09||Arizona State||25–10||11–7||3rd||NCAA Second Round|
|2009–10||Arizona State||22–11||12–6||2nd||NIT First Round|
|2012–13||Arizona State||21–12||9–9||6th||NIT Second Round|
|2013–14||Arizona State||21–12||10–8||T–3rd||NCAA Second Round|
|2014–15||Arizona State||18–16||9–9||T–5th||NIT Second Round|
|Arizona State:||155–133 (.538)||68–86 (.442)|
National champion Postseason invitational champion
Several of Sendek's former assistant coaches have gone on to have their own careers as head basketball coaches.
- Charlie Coles, Miami (Ohio) (1996-2012)
- John Groce, Ohio (2008-2012), Illinois (2012-present)
- Larry Hunter, Western Carolina (2005-present)
- Mark Phelps, Drake (2008-2013)
- Dedrique Taylor, Cal State Fullerton (2013-present)
- Thad Matta, Butler (2000-2001), Xavier (2001-2004), Ohio State (2004-present)
- Archie Miller, Dayton (2011-present)
- Sean Miller, Xavier (2004-2009), Arizona (2009-present)
- James Whitford, Ball State (2013-present)
- 1993 University of Kentucky Basketball Media Guide, p. 58.
- Weber, Chris A. (July 2009). "Point Person". Carnegie Mellon Today. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
- "Keala King gives statement on twitter for leaving Az". arizonasports.com. arizonasports.com. Retrieved March 15, 2012.
- "Arizona State fires Herb Sendek". espn.com. Retrieved March 24, 2015.
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