Dean Harris

Year Inducted: 1980

Category: Players

Schools / Organizations: (East St. Louis) Lincoln High School
Kansas State University


Biography: Kansas State University and the world lost more than a basketball player when Dean Harris died of multiple injuries sustained in a tragic auto accident near East St. Louis on May 20, 1974. We lost a dedicated young man. Dean started receiving college offers as a sophomore at (East St. Louis) Lincoln High School. His father, Earl, had the foresight not to tell him yet. Earl was also his coach through his junior year. The 6’8” Harris moved to Edwardsville for his senior season when he averaged 17.8 ppg and 14.7 rpg. Dean went to Kansas State in the fall of 1973 on a basketball scholarship from veteran coach Jack Hartman. As an 18-year old freshman, Harris was a starter from the first game, lining up with four veterans, three of whom were multi-year starters. “Crowds loved Harris. He was a bundle of wiry energy bouncing around the court like a winter colt on spring’s first day,” stated a K-State program dedicated to Dean. Hartman said of him: “He gave every indication he was on the threshold of being one of the league’s future super stars. Many times, I remember he played like a senior. . . He was one of the finest men I had the privilege to coach. . .He scored high in the intangibles.”