Dec. 13, 2013
Third-year Tennessee basketball coach Cuonzo Martin was recently announced as a 2014 metro-east inductee to the Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame.
The induction ceremony is set for April 26 at the Illinois State University Student Union ballroom in Normal, Ill.
Martin enjoyed an outstanding prep career at Lincoln High School in East St. Louis, Ill., and is being inducted alongside former Lincoln teammate and fellow All-State selection LaPhonso Ellis.
Martin and Ellis helped lead Lincoln to two IHSA Class AA state championships during the Tigers' incredible run of three consecutive state titles.
"This is a tremendous honor," Martin said. "As a kid, all I wanted to do was play for East St. Louis Lincoln in hopes of playing for a state championship someday. A lot of credit goes to my high school coach, Benny Lewis, and his staff, along with all my teammates for helping to put me in a position to be successful."
Martin, 42, went on to star at Purdue under head coach Gene Keady from 1992-95, scoring 1,666 points in 127 career games. Purdue posted a 90-37 record during Martin's four-year career, including a combined 54-12 mark in his last two seasons. He made 45.9 percent of his 3-point attempts (179-for-390) over his junior and senior seasons and was an 80 percent free-throw shooter.
During Martin's senior year (1994-95), he averaged 18.4 points per game while leading Purdue to the second of three consecutive Big Ten championships, earning first-team All-Big Ten honors.
The Atlanta Hawks made Martin the 57th overall pick in the 1995 NBA Draft, and he played professional basketball for four years, including NBA stints with the Milwaukee Bucks and the Vancouver Grizzlies.
Martin joined the collegiate coaching ranks as an assistant at Purdue in 2000. After eight seasons on the bench in West Lafayette and an eventual promotion to the role of associate head coach, Martin was named head coach at Missouri State. He spent three years at MSU, and his final two squads there averaged 25 wins per season.
He was introduced as Tennessee's 18th men's basketball coach on March 28, 2011.
For the complete list of 2014 Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame inductees, visit: http://1tn.co/1hMR2k9