Gary McKnight’s HOF numbers

All of the information below was done in support of Santa Ana Mater Dei boys basketball coach Gary McKnight getting a positive vote as a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame nominee. He has been nominated for the Class of 2018 and his high school accomplishments are more than comparable to the high school coaches who’ve previously been inducted. It was written up by Mater Dei supporter Bob Atwell with totals from team statistician Steve Colton. We support Bob’s work and have helped when asked for state record info. We hope Coach McKnight someday is accorded with this honor. The ultimate would be if he went in at the same time as former Alameda St. Joseph guard Jason Kidd, who is expected to be announced as an inductee for the Class of 2018 at NBA All-Star Weekend in a few weeks.

Mater Dei High School Head Coach Gary McKnight
(Updated 1 25 18)

A Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Nominee, Class of 2018, Mater Dei Head Basketball Coach Gary McKnight is the winningest coach on a percentage basis in the history of high school boys’ basketball, having won 91.3% of his games with an overall record of 1,098-104 since becoming Mater Dei’s head coach in 1983. His Mater Dei teams have averaged 31 wins and only 3 losses per season, the highest average win total and lowest average loss total per season in high school basketball history. Coach McKnight currently ranks first among active coaches and fifth among all-time coaching leaders in total career wins with 1,098 victories.

Photo: materdei.org.


Recipient of the 2017 NABC Guardians of the Game Leadership Award, the 2014 Morgan Wooten
Award for Lifetime Achievement in Coaching High School Basketball by the Naismith Basketball
Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass., the 2014 Naismith Boys High School Coach of the Year Award,
the MaxPreps’ 2014 National Coach of the Year Award for All Sports, the National High School Coaches Association High School Boys’ Basketball Coach of the Year Award, McKnight has won more games than any other coach in the history of California high school basketball.

Now in his 36th year as head coach of the Monarchs, McKnight led Mater Dei to the 2014 national championship with a perfect 35-0 record, the first time in California that a team has won the top CIFSS Championship and the top California state championship with a perfect record.

Under McKnight’s leadership, the Monarchs have won a record 11 California state championships, including a record four consecutive CIF titles at the highest level possible (Two Open Division and Two Division One titles), 16 Southern California Regional Championships, 22 CIF Southern Section championships, and 34 league championships in 35 years, including 29 consecutive league titles and an astonishing 110-1 league record during the past 12 years in what is considered the toughest league in California and one of the top leagues in the nation.

The Monarchs finished the 2016-2017 season with an overall record of 33-3, reaching the CIF Southern California regional championship game for the 10th time in the past 12 seasons, and for the 24th time over the past 35 years. Previously named National Coach of the Year in 1996, ESPN National Coach of the Year in 1987 and Section 7 Coach of the Year in 1996 and 1997, during the past 13 seasons, Mater Dei has earned 30 wins or more 11 times and has achieved 30-win seasons 24 out of the past 35 campaigns.

During McKnight’s tenure as head coach at Mater Dei, the Monarchs have had nine players compete in the NBA, including Stanley Johnson, Miles Simon, LeRon Ellis, Travis Wear, David Wear, Reggie Geary, Cedric Bozeman, Jamal Sampson and DJ Strawberry. The Monarchs currently have three former players coaching in the NBA, Miles Simon, L.A. Lakers assistant coach, Mike Gerrity, Cleveland Cavaliers player development coach, and Kamran Sufi, Washington Wizards player development coach. Many more have had successful college careers, including NCAA Final Four MVP Miles Simon, who won a national championship at Arizona and went on to play in the NBA.

Overall Record: 1,098-104 (91.3%) (1,201 Total Games) (as of 1 25 18):
CIF State Competition (California State Record*):
11 California State Titles*: 1987, 1990, 1995, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
California State Title Games*: 11-5 (69%)
California State Finals*: 16 out of 34 Years (49%)
CIFSS Competition:
22 CIF Titles in 35 Years* (63%)
6 Straight CIF Titles* 1992 to 1997
CIF Playoff Record* 143-13 (92%)
CIFSS Finals 28 out of 35 Years (80%)
CIFSS Semi-Finals 33 out of 35 Years (94%)
League Competition:
League Championships*: 34 out of 35 Years (97%)
29 Straight League Titles*
317-10 in League Play* (97%)
69 Consecutive League Victories (2011-2018)*

Stanley Johnson also was Mr. Basketball State POY for 2014 season. Photo: Mater Dei H.S.


CIFSS Players of the Year:
2014 – Stanley Johnson
2013 – Stanley Johnson
2012 – Xavier Johnson
2012 – Katin Reinhardt
2010 – Gary Franklin
2010 – Tyler Lamb
2009 – David Wear
2008 – David Wear
2007 – Taylor King
2006 – Taylor King
2005 – Mike Gerrity
2003 – Wesley Washington
2002 – Wesley Washington
2001 – Cedric Bozeman
2000 – Cedric Bozeman
1997 – Kevin Augustine
1995 – Shea Cotton
1994 – Miles Simon
1993 – Miles Simon
1992 – Reggie Geary
1987 – LeRon Ellis
1985 – Tom Lewis
1983 – Matt Beeuwsaert

All-Time High School Coaching Wins by Percentage (Active Coaches*)(as of 1 25 18):
Rank: Name: Percentage: Years:
1. Gary McKnight (Mater Dei, Santa Ana, CA) 91.3% (1,098-104) 36*
2. Bob Hurley (St. Anthony, Jersey City, NJ) 90.5% (1,182-124) 43
3. Ronald Bradley (8 Schools in GA) 90% (1,019-322) 52
4. Charles Womack (Hawley) 88% (896-127) 32
5. Morgan Wootten (DeMatha, Hyattsville, MD) 87% (1,274-192) 45

Active High School Coaching Wins:
Rank: Name: Total Wins: Years:
1. Gary McKnight (Mater Dei, Santa Ana, CA) 1,098 – 104 (91.3%) 36*
2. Charles Smith (Alexandria Peabody, Alexandria, LA) 996 – 175 (85%) 33*
3. Billy Hicks (Evarts, Harlan, Corbin, Scott County, Georgetown, KY) 960 – 271 (78%) 37*

All-Time High School Coaching Wins (Active Coaches*):
Rank: Name: Total Wins: Win % Years:
1. Robert Hughes (2 Schools in TX) 1,333 – 265 (83%) 46
2. Morgan Wootten (DeMatha, Hyattsville, MD) 1,274 – 192 (87%) 45
3. Bob Hurley (St. Anthony, Jersey City, NJ) 1,182 – 124 (90%) 43
4. Ralph Tasker (3 Schools in OH and NM) 1,122 – 291 (79%) 57
5. Gary McKnight (Mater Dei, Santa Ana, CA) 1,098 – 104 (91%) 36*
6. Bill Krueger (4 Schools in TX) 1,096 – 250 (79%) 38
7. Joel Hawkins (Baton Rouge Southern Lab, LA) 1,089 – 272 (82%) 42
8. Morgan Gilbert (Tyronza; Bay; Tuckerman, AR) 1,055 – 580 (65%) 46
9. Leslie Gaudet (Pine Prairie, LA) 1,026 – 353 (74%) 23
10. Walter VanHuss (Hampton; Kingsport Dobyns Bennett, TN) 1,021 – 313 (77%) 36

Coach McKnight Season Results (as of 1 25 18):
Year Championship Record Division League Champion Record
1983 CIF Champions 29-3 Major Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1984 CIF Runner-Up 28-2 Major Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1985 CIF Champions 29-0 5-A Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1986 CIF Champions 30-1 5-A Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1987 CIF & California State Champions 31-1 5-A Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1988 CIF Champions 21-8 5-A Angelus Bishop Amat 8-2
1989 CIF Quarterfinalists 25-3 5-A Angelus Mater Dei 8-0
1990 CIF & California State Champions 34-1 5-A Angelus Mater Dei 8-0
1991 CIF Semifinalists 25-5 I-A Angelus Mater Dei 9-1
1992 CIF & California State Champions 34-2 I-A Angelus Mater Dei 10-0
1993 CIF Champions 33-2 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
1994 CIF Champions 33-1 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
1995 CIF & California State Champions 36-1 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
1996 CIF Champions 34-2 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
1997 CIF Champions 32-3 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
1998 CIF Semifinalists 21-8 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 7-3
1999 CIF & Southern California Champions 34-4 I-A South Coast Mater Dei 10-0
2000 CIF & Southern California Finalists 35-1 I-A Serra Mater Dei 6-0
2001 CIF & California State Champions 33-2 I-A Serra Mater Dei 6-0
2002 CIF & Southern California Champions 29-5 II-AA Serra Mater Dei 6-0
2003 CIF & California State Champions 35-2 II-A Serra Mater Dei 6-0
2004 CIF Semifinalists 24-5 II-A Serra Mater Dei 5-1
2005 CIF & Southern California Champions 31-4 II-A Serra Mater Dei 5-1
2006 CIF & Southern California Champions 33-3 II-AA Serra Mater Dei 6-0
2007 So. California & CA State Champions 33-4 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2008 So. California & CA State Champions 35-1 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2009 CIF Runner-Up 31-2 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2010 CIF Champions 32-2 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2011 So. California & CA State Champions 32-3 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 9-1
2012 CIF & California State Champions 34-2 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2013 So. California & CA State Champions 34-2 I-AA Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2014 National Champions 35-0 OPEN Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2015 So. California Champions 29-5 OPEN Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2016 CIF Quarterfinalists 27-5 OPEN Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2017 Southern California Finalists 33-3 OPEN Trinity Mater Dei 10-0
2018 Present Season as of 1 25 18: 14-6 OPEN Trinity 5-1

Note: Former Crenshaw of Los Angeles head coach Willie West also is on this year’s list of nominees for induction for the first time. For players, other than Jason Kidd, Tina Thompson (Inglewood Morningside grad) is eligible for the first time. She is regarded as one of the best WNBA players of all-time.


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