Aug. 31, 2009
BERKELEY - Former Cal men's basketball coach Pete Newell, who guided the Golden Bears to the 1959 NCAA championship and the United State to a gold medal at the 1960 Olympics, has been elected to the FIBA International Basketball Hall of Fame.
In its announcement Monday, the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) said that the Class of 2009 will consist of 11 inductees, including three from the United State - Newell, former North Carolina State women's basketball coach Kay Yow and former NBA All-Star Oscar Robertson. The other new members of the hall are Artenik Arabadjian (referee, Bulgaria), Jacky Chazalon (player, France), Pedro Ferrándiz (coach, Spain), Ricardo Gonzalez (player, Argentina), Al Ramsay (contributor, Australia), Luis Martin (contributor, Argentina), Ubiratan Pereira (player, Brazil) and Marcel Pfeuti (referee, Switzerland).
Newell, Martin, Pereira, Pfeuti and Yow are being enshrined posthumously. Newell passed away on Nov. 17, 2009, at the age of 93 after a long illness
The official induction ceremony will take place on Sept. 20 in Katowice, Poland, coinciding with the finals of the 2009 Eurobasket tournament, and on Sept. 22 in the FIBA Hall of Fame located in Alcobendas (Madrid, Spain).
Newell served as head coach of the Bears from 1954-60 and guided Cal to four consecutive conference titles (1957-60). Voted National Coach of the Year in 1960, he finished his Cal career with a 119-44 record, which included an NCAA runner-up finish in '60 in addition to the 1959 title.
Newell also led the U.S. Olympic team to a gold medal at the 1960 Games in Rome with a squad that featured former Cal center Darrall Imhoff as well as such future NBA standouts as Robertson and Jerry West. He later served as Cal's Director of Athletics from 1960-68.
On Dec. 21, 1987, the playing surface at Harmon Gym (now Haas Pavilion) was renamed "Pete Newell Court" in his honor. A statue of Newell, created by renowned sculptor Eino, was installed in the Haas Pavilion Club Room in the fall of 2006.
Newell was inducted into the Cal Athletic Hall of Fame in 1987 and was enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass., a year later.
The FIBA Hall of Fame was officially inaugurated on March 1, 2007. It was constructed with the help of the city of Alcobendas (Madrid, Spain) and through the initiative of Ferrándiz, legendary coach of Real Madrid, founder and president of the foundation that carries his name and member of the 2009 FIBA class.
Inductees into the FIBA Hall of Fame are divided into four categories: players, coaches, technical officials and contributors. Enshrinement ceremonies into the FIBA Hall of Fame take place every two years and are limited to a maximum of six inductees that are still alive.
FIBA (fiba.com), the world governing body for basketball, is an independent association formed by 213 national basketball federations throughout the world.
For more information on the 2009 FIBA Hall of Fame Class, visit halloffame.fiba.com.