Nolan Richardson

Nolan Richardson (born December 27, 1941)

Teams coached: Tulsa Golden Hurricane, Arkansas Razorbacks
Tulsa record: 119-37 (.763)
Arkansas record: 390-170 (.696)
Overall record^: 509-207 (.711)

Career Accomplishments:


Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

2009-2011 Tulsa Shock
1985-2002 Arkansas
1981-1985 Tulsa
1978-1981 Western Texas College

Nolan Richardson Facts

  • Nolan Richardson, Jr.
  • Born December 27, 1941
  • Hometown: El Paso, Texas
  • Alma Mater: Texas Western College (BA, 1964)
  • Played collegiately at Texas Western (now UTEP), where he was one of a group of players that helped breakdown the unofficial color barriers in major college basketball
    • Spent his junior and senior seasons playing under legendary head coach Don Haskins, who would go on to lead the Miners – with a completely African-American starting lineup – to win the 1966 NCAA National Championships
  • Began his coaching career at Bowie High School in his hometown El Paso, Texas (1965-1978)
  • First collegiate job was as the head coach for three seasons at Western Texas College
    • Won the National Junior College Championship with WTJC in 1980
  • Moved up to Division I in 1981 when he was hired as the new head coach at Tulsa
  • Hired as the head coach at Arkansas in 1985 and would coach the Razorbacks for seventeen seasons
    • Became the first African-American head coach of men’s program in the Southwest Conference in 1985
    • Led the Razorbacks to the Final Four in 1990, 1994 and 1995, winning the NCAA National Championship in 1994
    • Won seven-straight conference titles from 1989-95 (three SWC and four SEC); named Southwest COY three times and SEC COY once
    • Was dismissed towards the end of the 2001-02 season, following some controversy as Richardson had publicly challenged AD Frank Broyles to fire him; Richardson claimed that he was being mistreated due to his race
  • Coached the Panama national team from 2005 to 2007; Richardson is fluent in Spanish
  • Named the head coach and general manager of the WNBA’s Tulsa Shock in 2009; finished the first season 6-28 and then resigned midway through his second season after starting 1-10
  • Along with his wife, Rose, had two children; along with three children from his first marriage

Nolan Richardson Coaching Tree

  • Mike Anderson (Arkansas, Missouri, UAB)
  • Ron Cottrell (Houston Baptist)
  • Scott Edgar (Eastern Oklahoma St, Southeast Missouri St, Duquesne, Murray State)
  • Darrell Hawkins (Prairie View A&M)
  • Nolan Richardson III (Tennessee State)
  • Andy Stoglin (Jackson State, Southern)


^ overall record includes head coaching positions at the NCAA Division I level only