McCarty's college coaching career began at his alma mater, as he led the Aggies to a 65–55 record from 1949 to 1953. He then moved to UTEP, where he coached from 1953 to 1959. He compiled a record of 75–58 and broke the color barrier at UTEP, recruiting the program's first African-American player, Charles Brown.
Following his stint as head coach of the Miners, McCarty was named athletic director at UTEP, a position he held until 1970. During this time, he hired future Hall of Fame coach Don Haskins - who brought UTEP their only national basketball championship in 1966. In 1970, McCarty left UTEP to become athletic director at the University of Wyoming, where he served until 1980. He retired to Albuquerque, where he ran the fund-raising efforts of the school's athletic club.
National champion Postseason invitational champion Conference regular season champion Conference regular season and conference tournament champion Division regular season champion Division regular season and conference tournament champion Conference tournament champion