Jack Rohan's history with Columbia dates back to his days as
a student from 1949-1953. As an
undergrad, Rohan was a member of the men's basketball team. The 1950-51 team, of which he was a part,
went undefeated in the regular season, and was inducted into the Columbia Athletics Hall of Fame. Rohan went on to earn his master's degree
from the Teacher's College in 1957.
Rohan is most famously known as the most successful men's
basketball coach in Columbia's history, after taking over as head coach in
1962. In his sixth season at the helm of
the Columbia basketball program in 1967-68, Rohan was selected as National
Coach of the Year. His team went 23-5
that year, wining the Ivy League title and finishing the season ranked sixth in
the nation. Three members of the 1967-68
team went on to play professionally, most notably Jim McMillian, an NBA
Champion with the Los Angeles Lakers.
At the peak of his career, Rohan built Columbia's men's
basketball into an Eastern powerhouse, recruiting talented student-athletes,
and bringing them together with coaching expertise that befuddled opponents.
Rohan stepped away from his position as head men's
basketball coach in 1974 to become the tenured chair of physical
education. Unable to stay from coaching
altogether, Rohan took over as the golf coach in 1976, and remained involved
with basketball as a camp lecturer, broadcaster and as a writer. He would return to the sidelines in 1990 for
another five-year stint as the Lion's head coach. In his second time around, Rohan once again
brought the Lions to contention. In
1993, with all-time leading scorer Buck Jenkins on the floor, Coach Rohan on
the bench, Columbia roared to a 10-4 season in the Ivy League, good for second
Upon retiring in 1995, Rohan left the program as the
all-time wins leader with 198 and games coached at 445.
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