Former Southern Illinois head coach Rich Herrin passed away late on Christmas Day at the age of 87, the school announced on Saturday. Herrin led the Salukis to 225 victories, three NCAA Tournaments, four NITs and three MVC titles during his 13-year tenure as their head coach (1985-98).
A native of Benton, Illinois, Herrin spent twenty-five years as the head coach of his alma mater, Benton HS (IL). He won 21 regional titles at Benton and coached a number of future college players, including eventual NBA player and coach Doug Collins.
When he became the Southern Illinois head coach in 1985, the Salukis had averaged just 11 wins per season over the previous five years. Herrin had the Salukis in the postseason by year four and, after four-straight NIT bids, got the program back to the NCAA Tournament in 1993.
Herrin was inducted into the SIU Hall of Fame in 2000 and the MVC Hall of Fame in 2010.
He is survived by his wife, Sue, and four children, Rodney, Kyle, Randy and Kristy.
credit to Southern Illinois Athletics for the image