After retiring from coaching nearly six years ago to the day, three-time National Champion and Basketball Hall of Famer Jim Calhoun has made his return to Connecticut basketball, becoming the first-ever head men’s basketball coach at the University of Saint Joseph (USJ).
Calhoun carries the passion of his stat stuffing, championship filled career into every Blue Jay practice, in hopes of taking this newly Co-Ed Division III program to the top. Calhoun's phenomenal coaching success story includes three Division I NCAA National Championships (1999, 2004, 2011) at the University of Connecticut, an NIT Championship (1988), and four appearances in the Final Four. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2005, and the founding class of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
Calhoun's college coaching career includes two previous stops---Northeastern University in Boston, and the University of Connecticut in Storrs. In 14 seasons at Northeastern, Calhoun led NU from the Division II ranks to one of the nation's top Division I mid-major programs, making the NCAA Tournament five times. In 26 seasons at Connecticut, Calhoun transformed UConn from a regional contender to a three-time national champion. In the BIG EAST Conference, the Huskies won a record seven BIG EAST Tournament championships, and 10 regular-season league titles. His numerous awards include the prestigious John R. Wooden “Legends of Coaching” Award in 2005, and he was the first BIG EAST coach to win the conference’s Coach of the Year award four times (1989-90, ‘93-‘94,’ 95-‘96, and ‘97-‘98). Today, UConn ranks among the nation's elite college basketball programs.
Calhoun’s greatest legacy, however, might well be the UConn players and coaches he has developed. 28 former UConn stars that played for Coach Calhoun have played or still play in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They include Clifford Robinson, Tate George, Chris Smith, Scott Burrell, Donyell Marshall, Donny Marshall, Kevin Ollie, Ray Allen, Travis Knight, Richard Hamilton, Khalid El-Amin, Jake Voskuhl, Caron Butler, Emeka Okafor, Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva, Hilton Armstrong, Josh Boone, Rudy Gay, Marcus Williams, Hasheem Thabeet, A.J. Price, Jeff Adrien, Jerome Dyson, Andre Drummond, Jeremy Lamb, Kemba Walker and Shabazz Napier. Among those, Kemba Walker, Andre Drummond, Ray Allen, Richard Hamilton, Caron Butler, and Cliff Robinson have been All-Star selections, while Allen, Hamilton, Scott Burrell, and Travis Knight own NBA championship rings.
Calhoun’s record in 40 years as a head coach stands at 873-380 going into the 2018-2019 season, which ranks sixth on the all-time Division I men's basketball wins list, while his 1,253 games coached is third all-time. He is 625-243 at UConn, by far the school’s winningest coach. Calhoun is 311-183 in BIG EAST competition, second in all-time wins, and his 35-19 record in the BIG EAST tourney ranks second all-time. Calhoun has eight 30-win seasons, third all-time, and he ranks sixth all-time with 25 20-win seasons. Calhoun is also fourth all-time with 49 NCAA Tournament wins (49-18). His overall national postseason record is 62-20 with four championships (3 NCAA, 1 NIT).
Born May 10, 1942, in Braintree, Mass., Calhoun is a graduate of Braintree High School and American International College in Springfield (1968). He began his coaching career at Old Lyme (Conn.) High School, and continued at Westport (Mass.) High and Dedham (Mass.) High before becoming the head coach at Northeastern University in 1972. He accepted the job at UConn in 1986.
Calhoun and his wife Pat were married in 1966 and live in Pomfret, Conn. They have two sons, James and Jeffrey. James and his wife Jennifer live in Massachusetts with daughters Emily (born 3/5/99) and Katie (born 12/29/00) and son Sam (born 6/8/03). Jeffrey and his wife Amy live in Connecticut with daughters Avery (born 1/26/02), Reese (born 4/7/03), and Peyton (born 3/26/05).