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AthleticHub Blog

This weekend, The New York Times Magazine will publish its annual “The Lives They Lived” issue, which recalls notable people who died in 2015. In my bailiwick, two of the more notable deaths were those of Jerry Tarkanian, the former basketball coach at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, who died in February at age 84, and Walter Byers, the former head of the N.C.A.A., who died in May. He was 93.Tarkanian, who was known as Tark the Shark and who coached for 31 years, has the seventh-highest winning percentage in men’s Division I history. Although his Runnin’ Rebels were best known for their fast-paced offense, no less an authority than Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski has described Tarkanian as “arguably the best defensive coach in college basketball history.”Byers, who became the executive director of the N.C.A.A. in 1951 — a position he held for the next 37 years — transformed...

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