Harlan Hodges

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Harlan Hodges
Sport(s) Basketball
Biographical details
Born (1902-11-11)November 11, 1902
Died June 6, 1994(1994-06-06) (aged 91)
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1933–1945 West Frankfort HS
1946 Missouri School of Mines
1947 Southern Illinois (Asst.)
1948–1954 Murray State
1954–1959 Idaho
Head coaching record
Overall 161-143

Harlan Crews Hodges (November 11, 1902 – June 6, 1994) was an American college basketball coach and educator. He was the head coach at Murray State (1948–54) and Idaho (1954–59), then became a high school administrator.

Early career[edit]

Hodges' coaching career began at West Frankfort High School in West Frankfort, Illinois. In his 12 seasons at WFHS, Hodges' Redbirds won their regional tournament three times, their sectional tournament twice, and made it to the state championship four times. He spent one season as the head basketball and track coach at the Missouri School of Mines before returning to his alma mater, Southern Illinois as an assistant basketball and football coach.[1] [2]

Murray State[edit]

Hodges was hired at Murray State College in Murray, Kentucky, in the spring of 1948.[1] His 1950–51 and 1951–52 teams finished the year ranked No. 16 in the years' end AP poll. His teams twice made the NAIA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament and was runner up in 1952.[3] Two of Hodges' players at Murray State, Bennie Purcell and Garrett Beshear, received All-American honors.[2] His overall record at Murray State was 109–66 (.623).


In May 1954, Hodges became head coach at the University of Idaho in the Pacific Coast Conference,[2][4] replacing Chuck Finley, who departed after seven seasons for Mississippi Southern.[5] His starting salary was $7,320,[6] and in his five years in Moscow, Hodges had a 52–77 (.403) record with the Vandals and no tournament appearances. His best season was his fourth in 1957–58, when they were 17–9 (.654) and finished fourth in the PCC at 9–7.[7] He resigned in late April 1959 to become a high school superintendent in Anna, Illinois.[8][9]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Murray State Racers (Ohio Valley) (1948–1954)
1948–49 Murray State Racers 13–12 4–5 6th
1949–50 Murray State Racers 18–13 5–7 5th NAIA 1st Round
1950–51 Murray State Racers 21–6 9–3 1st
1951–52 Murray State Racers 24–10 9–3 3rd NAIA Runner–up
1952–53 Murray State Racers 18–9 7–3 3rd
1953–54 Murray State Racers 15–16 6–4 2nd
Murray State: 109–66 40–25
Idaho Vandals (Pacific Coast) (1954–1959)
1954–55 Idaho 8–18 5–11 5th (N. div.)
1955–56 Idaho 6–19 4–12 8th
1956–57 Idaho 10–16 4–12 7th
1957–58 Idaho 17–9 9–7 4th
1958–59 Idaho 11–15 6–10 7th
Idaho: 52–77 28–52
Total: 161–143

      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

After coaching[edit]

After Idaho, Hodges was superintendent at Anna-Jonesboro Community High School for five years, then returned to Murray State to teach in 1964, and retired in 1973. He died in 1994 at age 91.[10]


  1. ^ a b "Murray names new net coach". Kentucky New Era. Hopkinsville, KY. Associated Press. April 1, 1948. p. 11. 
  2. ^ a b c "Idaho names Harlan Hodges as new cage coach". Spokane Daily Chronicle. May 8, 1954. p. 8. 
  3. ^ "The Coaches of Murray State". RacerHistory.com. Retrieved March 5, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Hodges to coach Idaho basketball". Eugene Register-Guard. Associated Press. May 9, 1954. p. 1C. 
  5. ^ "Chuck Finley resigns as Idaho basketball boss". Spokane Daily Chronicle. March 29, 1954. p. 15. 
  6. ^ "Hodges to get $7320 salary". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Associated Press. May 21, 1954. p. 16. 
  7. ^ "Basketball". Gem of the Mountains, University of Idaho yearbook. 1958. pp. 145–157. 
  8. ^ "Hodges quits as Vandals' cage coach". Spokane Daily Chronicle. April 29, 1959. p. 21. 
  9. ^ "UI cage coach Harlan Hodges leaving to take Illinois post". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Associated Press. April 30, 1959. p. 11. 
  10. ^ "Harlan Hodges – Basketball Coach, 1948-1953 (Deceased)". Murray State University Athletics. Retrieved March 6, 2014. 

External links[edit]