Seattle Redhawks men's basketball

Seattle Redhawks
2016–17 Seattle Redhawks men's basketball team
University Seattle University
Conference WAC
Location Seattle, WA
Head coach Cameron Dollar (8th year)
Arena KeyArena / Connolly Center
(Capacity: 8,901 / 999)
Nickname Redhawks
Colors Red and White[1]
NCAA Tournament runner-up
NCAA Tournament Final Four
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1953, 1955, 1956, 1958, 1964
NCAA Tournament appearances
1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1967, 1969
Conference regular season champions

Seattle Redhawks men's basketball is the men's basketball team representing Seattle University. The team started in 1946 and they were previously known as the Seattle Chieftains. Seattle was a member of NCAA Division I from 1946 to 1980 and once again starting in 2008. They are a member of the Western Athletic Conference (2012–present).[2] They were previously a member of the West Coast Conference (1971–1980).[3]


On January 21, 1952, the Seattle U. basketball team, then known as the Chieftains, beat the Harlem Globetrotters in a stunning 84–81 upset, led by Johnny O'Brien.[4] On March 22, 1958, Elgin Baylor led the Chieftains to the championship game of the 1958 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, where they fell short to the Kentucky Wildcats.[5] Between 1953 and 1969, they reached the NCAA Division I Tournament 11 times.[6]

Notable alumni of Seattle University basketball include Elgin Baylor, Johnny O'Brien, Eddie O'Brien, Eddie Miles, Clint Richardson, John Tresvant, Tom Workman, Frank Oleynick, Charlie Williams, Jawann Oldham, and Plummer Lott.[7]

From 1960–1969, Seattle produced more NBA players than any other school.

Seattle U then discontinued its men's basketball at the D. 1 level for some time, initially moving to NAIA. In 1980, Seattle rejoined as a D. 3 member, and later D. 2 member in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference.

In 2009, the program was upgraded to D. 1 status again. The Redhawks played as an independent for the next three years, until they were certified as a full D. 1 member for the 2012–13 basketball season. On April 16, 2009, Cameron Dollar was hired as the new men's basketball head coach to replace Joe Callero.[8] Seattle University and the nearby University of Washington agreed to renew their rivalry by playing annually from 2009 to 2014 while rotating sites. It is still currently unknown what the future of the rivalry is after the 2014–15 season. Washington beat Seattle in all games from 2009–2014.

The Redhawks needed a conference to join once they became full members in order to have a chance to make the NCAA Tournament. Seattle first applied to the West Coast Conference, where they played before leaving the NCAA, but were turned down. After declining an invitation to the now-defunct Great West Conference, Seattle applied for membership in the Big Sky Conference and Big West Conference but were turned down as well. During the 2010-13 NCAA conference realignment, the Western Athletic Conference saw a large number of their members leave. From 2011–2013, a total of 12 schools left the WAC. In 2012, the WAC invited Seattle to join, and Seattle accepted soon after.

Seattle began the 2012–13 season in the WAC, and for the 2013–14 season only three members from the prior year remained in the conference (Seattle, New Mexico State, and Idaho). The WAC added six new members for 2013–14, and once Idaho left for the Big Sky Conference in 2014–15, Seattle became the second-longest tenured WAC school after just three seasons in the league.

On December 29, 2012, Seattle U played their first WAC game, in a loss to Idaho 71–64.

Seattle U won their first conference tournament game in the 2014–15 season, beating Chicago State and UMKC en route to the WAC Tournament where they lost to New Mexico State. The Redhawks finished the regular season 16–15, and earned an invite to the College Basketball Invitational. It was the Redhawks first D.I postseason tournament since 1969. Seattle U beat Pepperdine and then Colorado in the first two rounds in the Connolly Center, before losing to Loyola (Ill.) on the road in the semi-finals. Loyola (Ill.) would go on to win the tournament.

Home court

Seattle moved to KeyArena, just a few miles from campus, for men's basketball in 2009 when the Redhawks moved to D. 1. KeyArena opened on October 26, 1995, and plays host to other sporting events, family events, and other entertainment.[9] Despite seating just over 17,000 people, Seattle curtains off the upper deck and only sells tickets for the lower bowl and luxury boxes, making the official capacity for Redhawks games 8,901. 1,160 of that is luxury boxes.

Seattle has played a game at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Washington on select years since moving back to D1. The games are referred to as the "ShoWare Classic".

The Connolly Center on the campus is seldom used by the men's team as it only seats 999. Seattle U hosted their College Basketball Invitational games at the Connolly Center in 2015 because KeyArena was in use for the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.

In 2016, the Connolly Center will host six Seattle U home games, and more games will be played here in future years.

Season-by-season records

Season Coach Overall Conference Standing Postseason
1946–47 Len Yandle, Bill Fenton 18–12
1947–48 Len Yandle, Bill Fenton 10–16
1948–49 Al Brightman 12–14
1949–50 Al Brightman 12–17
1950–51 Al Brightman 32–5
1951–52 Al Brightman 29–8 NIT First Round
1952–53 Al Brightman 29–4 NCAA Regional Third Place
1953–54 Al Brightman 26–2 NCAA First Round
1954–55 Al Brightman 22–7 NCAA Regional Fourth Place
1955–56 Al Brightman 18–11 NCAA Regional Fourth Place
1956–57 John Castellani 24–3 NIT Quarterfinals
1957–58 John Castellani 23–6 NCAA Runner-up
1958–59 Vincent Cazzetta 23–6
1959–60 Vincent Cazzetta 16–10
1960–61 Vincent Cazzetta 18–8 NCAA First Round
1961–62 Vincent Cazzetta 18–9 NCAA First Round
1962–63 Vincent Cazzetta 21–6 NCAA First Round
1963–64 Bob Boyd 22–6 NCAA Regional Third Place
1964–65 Bob Boyd 19–7
1965–66 Lionell Purcell 16–10
1966–67 Lionell Purcell 18–8 NCAA First Round
1967–68 Morris Buckwalter 15–14
1968–69 Morris Buckwalter 20–8 NCAA First Round
1969–70 Morris Buckwalter 15–10
1970–71 Morris Buckwalter 12–14
Seattle (West Coast Conference) (1971–1980)
1971–72 Morris Buckwalter 17–9 10–4 3rd
1972–73 William O'Connor 13–13 6–8 T–5th
1973–74 William O'Connor 15–11 11–3 2nd
1974–75 William O'Connor 8–18 6–8 6th
1975–76 William O'Connor 11–16 6–6 4th
1976–77 William O'Connor 14–14 7–7 T–3rd
1977–78 William O'Connor 11–17 6–8 5th
1978–79 Jack Schalow 16–11 8–6 4th
1979–80 Jack Schalow 12–15 8–8 7th
Seattle (Independent) (1980–1992)
1980–81 Jack Schalow 9–13
1981–82 Len Nardone 6–22
1982–83 Len Nardone 15–16
1983–84 Len Nardone 14–14
1984–85 Len Nardone 21–12
1985–86 Bob Johnson 10–20
1986–87 Bob Johnson 17–13
1987–88 Bob Johnson 13–17
1988–89 Bob Johnson 7–23
1989–90 Bob Johnson 10–20
1990–91 Bob Johnson 16–15
1991–92 Al Hairston 14–17
1992–93 Al Hairston 6–24
1993–94 Al Hairston 17–14
1994–95 Al Hairston 10–20
1995–96 Al Hairston 14–17
1996–97 Al Hairston 13–18
Seattle (Northwest Conference[10]) (1997–1999)
1997–98 Al Hairston 4–20 3–15 10th
1998–99 Al Hairston 4–20 4–14 10th
Seattle (?) (1999–2001)
1999–00 Al Hairston 7–17
2000–01 Dave Cox 6–21
Seattle (Great Northwest Athletic Conference) (2001–2008)
2001–02 Joe Callero 6–23 4–14 9th
2002–03 Joe Callero 16–11 9–9 7th
2003–04 Joe Callero 9–18 5–13 T–8th
2004–05 Joe Callero 11–16 6–12 8th
2005–06 Joe Callero 16–11 9–9 7th
2006–07 Joe Callero 20–9 11–5 T–1st
2007–08 Joe Callero 18–9 11–7 8th[n 1]
Seattle (Independent) (2008–2012)
2008–09 Joe Callero 21–8
2009–10 Cameron Dollar 17–14
2010–11 Cameron Dollar 11–20
2011–12 Cameron Dollar 12–15
Seattle (Western Athletic Conference) (2012–present)
2012–13 Cameron Dollar 8–22 3–15 10th
2013–14 Cameron Dollar 13–17 5–11 8th
2014–15 Cameron Dollar 18–16 7–7 4th CBI Semifinals
2015–16 Cameron Dollar 15–17 7–7 4th CBI Quarterfinals

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

Retired numbers

Seattle Redhawks retired numbers
No. Player Pos. Career
3 Ed O'Brien [11] 1950–53
4 John O'Brien [11] 1950–53
20 Eddie Miles F 1960–63
22 Elgin Baylor SF 1956–58
32 Tom Workman [12] C 1964–66
44 Clint Richardson SG 1975–79


  1. Placing in standings based on NCAA nullification ruling
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