Tarkanian

A few years ago around 2009/2010 I applied for the UNLV athletic directors job.  
While I did not get the position I was one of the finalists for the job
and I will continue to remain active with the University. Here is a portion 
of what was in my letter of interest in applying for the position.
 
My following thoughts were originally posted as a candidate in the 2010 Nevada
U.S. Senate campaign.

My interest in the position is to bring the university and city back together as 
one. We do not have a school and community relationship as we need here. We were 
starting to at one time. It takes the whole town of boosters, alumni, student 
body, faculty, coaches, school administrators, business owners, government 
officials and more to all be involved and all buy in to what we are trying to 
do. A university is no different than a country. You can’t look at your history 
as if it never existed. You have to acknowledge every event, anyone and everyone 
who helped shape who and what you are. Where does this leave us? The city of Las 
Vegas is one of the most well known cities in the world. Did the city of Las 
Vegas put UNLV on the map? No! One man did it all by himself. He did in the 
middle of much controversy. There were those who did not want to help or see him 
succeed. There was a certain amount of envy and resentment. He did it anyway. We 
were on the verge of being in the final eight of the western regional’s 
throughout the ninety’s and maybe further in men’s basketball. What did we get? 
We had an over-zealous president Robert Maxim who was going to re-invent the 
wheel. He was going to turn UNLV into the Georgetown of the west coast. Las 
Vegas is what it is. You are what you are. A person cannot waltz into this town 
and change the fast pace high fever pitch emotional level of this city. So what 
did we get? We got screwed. Big time! What do we do now? We have to acknowledge 
the man who is UNLV. Jerry Tarkanian! He needs to be treated properly. Not by 
naming the floor at the T&M after him, or some stupid off ramp on route 215. You 
will know it has been done properly when we get a petition going to change the 
name from Maryland Parkway to Tarkanian Parkway. I will be glad to start it when 
I am hired. It needs to originate from the university. Also, I hope people 
remember Ralph Readout. He was the engine that drove the machine (Tarkanian was 
the vehicle). Ralph Readout was the most motivated man I ever met. I took his 
class, and I learned well. He was the assistant coach to Tarkanian, and one of 
the greatest basketball coaches in America that nobody knows about. 

In 1975 John Wooden retired. What people don’t know is that he was being forced 
into retirement whether he wanted to or not. Why? Jerry Tarkanian was about to 
push the University of (Wooden,NCAA,UCLA) into oblivian. Tarkanian was in the 
process of single-handedly dismantling their program. How? Their players were 
starting to gravitate here. I think 110 points per game just might interest some 
players.(That’s without 3 point shots). He was the guy revolutionizing the game. 
The rest is now history. The University of ( Wooden, NCAA,UCLA) then spent many 
years going after Tark, accusing him of doing things that they had been doing 
for fifteen years and everyone knows it. 

I don’t know why, but the city and the university have never really honored 
Jerry Tarkanian  properly and completely. He gave us great memories, 1977, 24-0, 
103-73 and hundreds more. I may have to start the petition myself. One thing is 
for certain, the people who were here know and we will never be able to thank 
him enough. It’s a shame, because as far as basketball goes all that the people 
of Las Vegas ever wanted to do was ”Walk Like A Tarkanian.” 

P.S. To the Review Journal: Robert Smith is the #1 player in UNLV basketball 
history.

That is what I said then.
and now!!!

When I win in 2016, as Nevada U.S. Senator we will immediately be moving on this and we will not need a petition.
We can do it as they do things in Washington these days, through executive order.
I think that “The Jerry Tarkanian Thomas and Mack Center” sounds appropriate.

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