For the love of the game

UC Clermont College head men’s basketball coach John Hurley instructs his team during a recent break in practice.

He has reached a milestone few have attained. UC Clermont College head men’s basketball coach John Hurley says he has done a lot of reflecting on his career, since his Cougar squad gave him his 900th coaching win in December 2011.


Even after 40 plus years of coaching, Hurley is still going strong.

“I do it for the love of the game,” he said, during a recent practice of his squad on the UC Clermont College campus. “I have a passion for basketball. I have really enjoyed working with the many young men who have played for me.”

Hurley, who lives in Clermont County, helped launch the Cincinnati State basketball program, where he achieved over 550 wins in his 26 year tenure. He also has coached at Ohio University and Milford High School. Hurley has spent the past eight years at UC Clermont, where he has led his teams to numerous regional championships and in 2008, the United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Championship.

What makes a good basketball player?

“Someone who really loves the game,” said Hurley. “I look for a player with good character, and a strong worth ethic in the classroom and on the court.”

Hurley wants his team to be challenged. This year they have played five NCAA DII teams in a row, including Northern Kentucky University.

“I think we competed pretty well,” said the coach, who added that he would like to see UC Clermont basketball become either a NCAA Division III or an NAIA program.