Jerry Tarkanian 1930 - 2015

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Danny Webster

Elvis and Liberace. Howard and Bugsy. Siegfried & Roy. Sinatra, Sammy and Deano. Las Vegas icons, one and all. But none was revered as much as Jerry Tarkanian. That's mostly because none meant more to the city that exists beyond the bright lights of Las Vegas Boulevard as did Tarkanian, the Hall of Fame basketball coach who galvanized a community that few outsiders believed existed—not to mention elevated the standing of a university that few outsiders respected. So when Tarkanian died at the age of 84 on the morning of February 11, 2015, a part of our city died, too.

What follows is our tribute to the legend who will go down as one of the best coaches in college basketball history—and as so much more to the city he loved … and that loved him right back.