UH coach honored by Conn. sports hall of fame

HOUSTON Entering his fifth year at the head of the Cougar bench in 2008-09, Penders is one of just 28 NCAA Division I coaches to reach 600 wins during his career and enters this season with 608 victories.

He has established a name for himself in reviving college programs, including Columbia, Fordham, Rhode Island and Texas.

During his UH tenure, Penders has guided the Cougars to 81 wins with postseason appearances in three of four years. In 2007-08, Penders led UH to a 24-10 record -­ the program's highest number of victories since 1991-92 -- and a berth in the semifinals of the inaugural College Basketball Invitational.

Penders joined the UH program in 2004-05, inheriting a team that had won only 18 games in a season once in the previous 11 years. Since he took over, the Cougars have won at least 18 games for four consecutive seasons.

Penders started his basketball coaching career as a high school coach at the Univerisity of Bridgeport for three years and landed his first college job at Tufts University in Medford, Mass., in 1971. He was elected to the New England Hall of Fame in 2006.

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