Jim Daley thought he would like to be the baseball coach at his alma mater, Whitman-Hanson Regional.
But the varsity girls’ basketball position opened up. The rest is history.
Daley, who guided the Whitman-Hanson girls to the state tournament 30 times in 33 seasons, will be inducted into the Massachusetts Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame on Sunday at Holy Cross, joining former Brockton High boys’ coach Victor Ortiz.
He retired last spring after a 36-year career as a coach, teacher, and chairman of the social studies department, compiling a 510-216 record on the court. His teams won 15 league championships.
A 1971 W-H graduate, he went on to play baseball at Bridgewater State University.
“I had coached baseball as a volunteer assistant and freshman boys’ basketball and was freshman girls’ basketball coach for two years before the girls varsity job opened up,” recalled Daley, a former Globe Coach of the Year and two-time MBCA Coach of the Year.
“I had played basketball at Whitman-Hanson, but I picked the brain of a lot of coaches when I first started and I have a box of books on basketball.”
He said his wife, Maureen, a three-sport captain at Whitman-Hanson, “encouraged me to take the varsity job. She had a T-shirt that said ‘we interrupt this marriage to bring you the basketball season.’ ”
“It’s been a great ride. It was a privilege to coach so many wonderful players,” said Daley, a Hanson resident who coached four sets of twins.
“Even though we never won a sectional title, we left it all on the floor. We played hard and I’m proud of all of them and thank them.”Marvin Pave can be reached at marvin.pave @rcn.com.