Former UH Basketball Coach Guy V. Lewis will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame tonight. From 1956 to 1986, Coach Lewis produced nearly 600 wins, including 5 NCAA Final Four appearances. Though the first was in 1968, Coach Lewis is most widely known for producing the Phi Slama Jama team, which developed Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler, with a game played above the rim.
“He always said the dunk is a much safer and accurate shot than a jump shot, so he told his players, ‘Anytime you can dunk, do so.’ And Phi Slama Jama was born,” the coach’s son, Vern Lewis said.
Perhaps his most important contribution to the game is his recruiting of African American athletes well before the Civil Rights era.
“He saw that the great players, many were African Americans. And he said, ‘In order for Houston to compete, I’ll have to get some African American players,'” Vern Lewis said.
He will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday with two of his former players — Elvin Hayes and Hakeen Olajuwon — presenting the honor.
Springfield Symphony Hall plays host to the Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony which is the culmination of the greatest careers the sport of basketball has ever seen and one of the most memorable events on the basketball calendar.
Come join the Class of 2013, their Hall of Fame presenters, returning Hall of Famers and industry celebrities as these legends are honored by formally being welcomed into the Basketball Hall of Fame family. This event is televised live on NBATV and streamed globally throughout the evening.