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Monday, April 18, 2022

Coach Mike Haley Awarded Long-Overdue Recognition

In Farewell, Coach Mike Haley, I wrote:

Mike Haley, one of the most accomplished high school basketball coaches in Ohio history, passed away last weekend at the age of 73. To say that Coach Haley is underrated is an understatement; even the obituary published in the local Dayton newspaper--the newspaper of record in the city where he was a dominant coaching figure for two decades--shortchanged him one of his championships! To set the record straight, let it be noted that Coach Haley won four Ohio high school basketball titles: his 1976 Roth team went 22-5 en route to capturing the AA title, his 1981 Roth team went 26-1 en route to capturing the AAA title, his 1982 Roth team went 24-4 en route to capturing the AA title and his 1987 Dunbar team went 24-4 en route to capturing the AAA title. Coach Haley also led Dunbar to the 1984 AAA Championship Game before losing to Canton McKinley.

It is outrageous that a four-time state championship coach has not been inducted into the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame or the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame. High school coaching statistics are difficult to track down but I doubt that there are many four-time championship coaches who are not in the Ohio High School Basketball Hall of Fame and I suspect that there are many coaches in that Hall who failed to win four titles. 

Haley has finally been recognized by the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame, as he was inducted as a member of the 2020 Hall of Fame class. The ceremony was delayed until this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Haley's page lists his career Ohio coaching record as 334-97 with four state championships (1976, 1981-82, 1987). Also, Coach Haley's 1981 and 1982 Roth championship teams were inducted as part of the Class of 2020

I wish that Coach Haley had lived long enough to celebrate this well-earned honor with his family and friends; I know that being a Hall of Famer mattered to Coach Haley, and that he was both disappointed and puzzled that he was not inducted a long time ago.

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posted by David Friedman @ 9:52 PM



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