Saint Augustine’s University and the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) family mourn the loss of all-time great Harvey Heartley, Sr. Heartly passed away on Monday, June 23, 2014. He was 79.
A legendary figure at Saint Augustine’s and the CIAA, Heartley served as an athletic director and head men’s basketball coach. As athletic director, Heartley was instrumental in the growth of the ultra-popular CIAA Basketball Tournament and the University’s athletic department.
A Raleigh, N.C., resident, Heartley played a huge role in changing the by-law to allow every team to qualify for the CIAA Tournament instead of eight teams. Under his leadership, the SAU athletic department grew from three to 13 sports during his tenure.
His illustrious credentials as an athletic director are only matched by his accomplishments as a basketball coach. Heartley is the University’s all-time winningest men’s basketball coach with 371 victories from 1971 to 1994, a span of 23 years.
Under his guidance, the Falcons reached the 1984 NCAA Division II men’s basketball national finals, making them one of three current CIAA schools in conference history to advance to the men’s national championship game. Heartley coached NAIA District 26 Tournament championship teams at SAU which qualified for the NAIA National Tournament in 1977 and 1980. He led the Falcons to the CIAA Tournament championship game four times.
Heartley began his career as an administrator in athletics at Saint Augustine’s College, now University in 1971. In addition to serving as the athletic director and head men’s basketball coach, Heartley also coached several other sports and taught classes. He was the school’s athletic director from 1971 to 1996.
His achievements landed Heartley in numerous hall of fames including the CIAA Hall of Fame, the Saint Augustine’s University Hall of Fame and the N.C. Central University Hall of Fame. Heartley also received several coaching awards including CIAA Coach of the Year, CIAA Athletic Director of the Year four times and NAIA District 26 Coach of the Year.
Before arriving at SAU, Heartley was a stellar high school boys’ basketball coach. He coached state championship teams at then-Ligon High School in Raleigh, N.C. and then-Cooper High School in Clayton, N.C.
An outstanding basketball player, Heartley played at N.C. Central (then known as North Carolina College) from 1951-55 and was co-captain his final two seasons. A star in his own right, Heartley played alongside future NBA Hall of Famer Sam Jones in the backcourt during his basketball career at NCCU. A native of Clayton, N.C., Heartley played under legendary coach John B. McLendon.
An All-CIAA player in 1955, Heartley earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in physical education and education administration from North Carolina Central University in 1955 and 1965, respectively.
Funeral servies will be Friday at noon, June 27, 2014, at First Baptist Church on 101 South Wilmington Street in Raleigh, N.C. The viewing will be at 11 a.m. The funeral home in charge is Barnes Funeral Home on 325 Camel Street in Clayton, N.C.