What seemed like a long day of pregame build-up finally led into Tuesday's much-anticipated clash between the Cardinal and the Minutemen.
Highly-regarded as a true teacher of the game and a well-respected veteran of West Coast basketball, Dick Davey enters his fourth season as Stanford's associate head coach and works primarily with the team's post players.
No stranger to the Bay Area hoops scene, Davey previously spent 30 years working with the men's basketball program at Santa Clara and served as the Broncos' head coach for 15 seasons.
Since taking over the reins of the Santa Clara program at the start of the 1992-93 campaign, Davey enjoyed a high level of success with the Broncos prior to retiring at the end of the 2006-07 season and assisting the university in its fundraising and development efforts.
A four-time WCC Coach of the Year, Davey finished his illustrious career with a 251-190 overall record and a 122-88 mark in WCC competition. He directed the Broncos to three NCAA Tournament appearances, three WCC regular season championships, a WCC Tournament title in 1993 and four 20-win seasons. Under his watch, Santa Clara boasted 23 All-WCC selections and four WCC Player of the Year honorees (Sean Denison, Marlon Garnett and Steve Nash twice). Davey's 251 career victories rank second in the school record books behind coaching legend Carroll Williams.
Under Davey, Santa Clara developed a reputation as a giant killer, as his teams earned five memorable victories over top-25 programs. Seeded 15th and making their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1986-87, the Broncos stunned fifth-ranked and second-seeded Arizona 64-61 in the opening round of the 1993 NCAA Tournament. Three years later, 10th-seeded Santa Clara knocked off seventh-seeded Maryland 91-79 in another NCAA Tournament first-round shocker. Other signature upsets included the Broncos' 78-69 win over fourth-ranked and defending national champion UCLA at the 1995 Maui Invitational, an 80-67 win over a then-No. 13 California squad led by Jason Kidd and Lamond Murray in 1993 and a 77-66 victory over fourth-ranked North Carolina at the 2004 Pete Newell Challenge.
Davey, 69, saved one of his best seasons for his final campaign in 2006-07. The Broncos finished 21-10 overall and rolled to a 10-4 mark in WCC play, good for second place in the conference. It was the fourth 20-win season under Davey and the fifth time that the Broncos won at least 10 conference games during his tenure. Not only did Santa Clara win at Stanford for the first time in 19 years and snap Gonzaga's 50-game home winning streak, the Broncos also swept Saint Mary's, San Francisco, San Diego and Portland on their way to the second place league finish.
Davey also guided Santa Clara to 20-win seasons in 2000-01, 1995-96 and 1994-95. The Broncos captured the 1995 WCC regular season title outright and were crowned co-champions in 1996 and 1997.
His association with Santa Clara spanned 30 years, starting as an assistant coach in 1977 under Williams. During his time as an assistant, the Broncos registered six 20-win seasons, made four NIT appearances and advanced to the 1987 NCAA Tournament.
Prior to Santa Clara, Davey spent five seasons as an assistant coach under Dick Edwards at California in his first college coaching assignment.
Numerous players coached by Davey at Santa Clara went on to play professional basketball both in the United States and overseas, including two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash, who played for Davey from 1992-96. Marlon Garnett (1993-97) also spent time in the NBA, playing for the Boston Celtics during the 1998-99 season before continuing his pro career in Europe. Other former Santa Clara players under Davey that also reached the professional basketball ranks include Doron Perkins, Brian Jones, Steve Ross, Kyle Bailey and Jason Sedlock.
Davey began his coaching career at Leland High School in San Jose in 1968. In five seasons, his teams compiled a 61-53 record and booked a third place finish in the 1971 Central Coast Section playoffs.
A native of Ceres, Calif., Davey enrolled at the University of the Pacific in 1960 and earned three varsity letters in both basketball and baseball over the next four years. He started 78 straight games for the Tigers from 1961-64. An outstanding baseball player as well, Davey earned All-West Coast Conference honors as a catcher in both his junior and senior seasons. His talents caught the eye of the professional scouts and after receiving his degree in education from Pacific in 1964, Davey signed a professional contract with the San Francisco Giants and played two seasons in their farm system before an injury cut short his promising career.
Davey prepped at Ceres Union High School and was an outstanding three-sport athlete as a football quarterback, basketball guard and baseball catcher.
An avid fisherman and golfer, Davey and his wife Jeanne reside in Saratoga. They have two children, Mike and Kimberly, and four grandchildren: Samantha, Rachel, Niko and Kyra.