|James “Jim” Thrash has been known an excellent teacher and recruiter for 40 years. Thrash started as an assistant coach at and eventually as head coach in 1974-1977 at Manzano High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Monarchs recorded a 141-32 record. In addition to winning state championships in both 1973 and 1974, Manzano also captured five district titles and made two appearances in the state semifinals. In Thrash’s final three seasons as the head coach, the Monarchs posted a 66-16 record while winning three district titles with two trips to the state tournament’s Final Four.|
After earning 12 varsity letters in four sports and graduating from La Grove High School in Farina (IL) in 1964, Thrash attended Thornton Junior College (Harvey, IL) where he earned five letters in three sports. He would go onto Eastern New Mexico University and play basketball on a pair of teams that won 46 of their 57 games and advanced to the NAIA National Championship finals before graduating with honors in 1969.
From 1978 through 1983, Thrash was an assistant coach at Fresno State, where the Bulldogs compiled a record of 133-42, captured three Pacific Coast Athletic Association titles and the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) championship in 1983. Fresno State posted three consecutive 20-win seasons from 1981 to 1983, including a 27-3 record in 1982 which included an appearance in the NCAA Tournament’s “Sweet 16.” As the chief recruiter for the Bulldogs, Thrash recruited four players, Rod Higgins, Ron Anderson, Bernard Thompson and Pete Verhoeven, who went on to highly successful careers in the NBA.
Thrash brings 16 years of coaching experience, all with winning teams, to the Boilermaker program. As the leader of the Southern Idaho men’s basketball program, Thrash led the Golden Eagles to an 18-12 record in 1997 where they allowed only 62.7 points per game, second-best in the nation, and a 28-4 mark and a Scenic West Conference championship during the 1998 season. Thrash’s two years at Southern Idaho served as a return to coaching following 13 years in fund-raising, consulting, and working several clinics and camps in addition to serving as a color analyst for television. Thrash eventually ended his coaching career as an assistant coach at Purdue University. In the two years that Thrash was on the Purdue sideline, the Boilers compiled a 45-23 record. During that time, the Boilermakers also made two runs deep into the NCAA tournament. In the 1998-1999 season, Purdue advanced to the Sweet 16 before losing to Temple. The 1999-2000, the Boilers made it to the Elite Eight before succumbing to Wisconsin. Jim was a scout for the NBA Charlotte Bobcats from 2007-2015