Some two weeks after the men’s basketball coaches with the most combined victories in Division I faced off in a game, the Division II version will tip off.
McKendree University of Lebanon, Ill., coached by Harry Statham, visits William Jewell, coached by Larry Holley, today in Liberty.
Combined, Statham and Holley have won 1,938 games. Statham’s 1,086 victories are the most by a coach in the history of four-year schools. Holley’s 852 victories rank No. 13 all time.
On Feb. 1, Syracuse defeated Duke in a 91-89 overtime thriller. The coaches in that game, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski and the Orange’s Jim Boeheim, have combined to win 1,919 Division I games entering Wednesday.
Statham is in his 48th season, all at McKendree.
Holley, who started his head coaching career in 1969, spent six years at Central Methodist, two at Northwest Missouri State and has coached at Jewell, his alma mater, since 1979.
Today’s game will mark their third meeting. Jewell won 86-72 in 1998 and 94-90 in 1999. Their programs were NAIA members then.
This marks their first game as NCAA Division II. Jewell, 8-13, is competing in the Great Lakes Valley Conference for the second year. This is first season in the league for McKendree, 9-11.
Jewell freshman D’Vante Mosby, a Fort Osage graduate, leads the Cardinals in scoring with 12.5 points per game. He also averages a team-best 8.2 rebounds per game.