January 9, 2013

Southern Virginia Honors Harmon as Pioneer Coach

Written by Chris Pendleton

BUENA VISTA, VA.—On a night when he collected his 388th career coaching victory at Southern Virginia University, Head Women's Basketball Coach Mike Harmon was honored as the university's first Pioneer Coach.

"The Pioneer Award was created in 2012 to recognize those first administrators, coaches and scholar-athletes, who led by example and paved the way for others to follow," said Athletic Director Scott Y. Doxey. "Mike could not be more deserving of this recognition for his numerous accomplishments, as well as the countless lives he's touched throughout his 15-year coaching career at Southern Virginia."

Harmon came to Southern Virginia in 1998—one year the after the school began its athletic program—as the university's first head women's volleyball coach and also served as the assistant women's basketball coach that same year.

The following season, Harmon became head women's basketball coach and guided the program to its first ever NSCAA national championship during the 1999-2000 season. Throughout his 14-year tenure as head women's basketball coach, Harmon has led Southern Virginia to three national titles (2000, 2002, 2006) and is the program's all-time winningest coach with 183 career wins.

In addition to women's basketball, Harmon served as Southern Virginia's head women's volleyball coach for ten seasons leading that program to two national championships (2000, 2002) while tallying 205 career wins.

Harmon's combined 388 career wins and 5 national titles are more than any other coach in Southern Virginia University history. Over the past 15 years, Harmon has coached 40 USCAA All-Americans (17 basketball and 23 volleyball) and 22 Academic All-Americans (14 basketball and 8 basketball).

"We are so grateful for the countless hours of work and personal sacrifices Mike has given our athletics program over the past 15 years," said Senior Women's Administrator Deidra Dryden. "On behalf of Southern Virginia athletics and all of his former players, we wanted to express our gratitude to Coach Harmon by honoring him as our first Pioneer Coach."