Chris Harriman is in his third season at Nebraska, joining the Husker basketball program as an assistant coach in May of 2012. Harriman works with both the frontcourt and backcourt players and assists with opponent scouting. Harriman’s coaching has been instrumental in the development of the Husker wing players over the last two years, as three players have earned All-Big Ten honors.
In 2013-14, Harriman helped Terram Petteway become the first Husker since 1998 to capture first-team all-conference honors. Petteway also led the Big Ten in scoring at 18.1 points per game, the first a Husker has been a conference scoring leader in over 60 years. Shavon Shields also earned honorable-mention All-Big Ten honors and was a two-time Big Ten Player of the Week.
In his first season at NU, Harriman helped turn Dylan Talley into an All-Big Ten performer, as he led the Huskers in both scoring and rebounding. In addition, he helped Ray Gallegos improve his scoring average more than 10 points per game from his previous year of competition. In addition, his recruiting acumen helped Nebraska sign Tai Webster, who started 30 games as a freshman in 2013-14.
Prior to joining the Husker staff, Harriman spent four seasons as an assistant coach at Saint Louis University working under the tutelage of the late Rick Majerus. During his tenure, the Billikens posted a pair of 20-win seasons, including a 26-8 mark in 2011-12 that culminated in a third-round appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
In 2011-12, the Billikens won 26 games, finishing second in the Atlantic-10 Conference with a 12-4 mark and earning the program’s first NCAA Tournament bid since 2000. SLU ranked in the top 25 nationally in four categories, including scoring defense (57.6, eighth), scoring margin (11.1, 14th), turnover margin (+3.5, 16th) and turnovers per game (11.2, 25th) and received the program’s first national ranking since 1994. SLU downed Memphis, 61-54, for the program’s first NCAA win since 1995 before falling to No. 1 seed Michigan State, 65-61 in the third round.
The longest-tenured member of Majerus’ SLU staff, Harriman filled in as head coach for a game in March of 2012 when Majerus was hospitalized and guided the Billikens to a 75-60 win at Duquesne, a victory that clinched second place in the Atlantic-10.
A native of Sydney, Australia, Harriman’s recruiting ties helped SLU land highly-regarded players, including top Australian players Cody Ellis and Christian Salecich, and New Zealand’s Rob Loe. In fact, Harriman played a lead role in recruiting four of SLU’s top seven scorers in his final year for the Billikens.
Prior to SLU, Harriman served for four years as an assistant coach at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale-Davie, Fla. He worked under head coach Gary Tuell, his college coach at Augusta State. Harriman was instrumental in recruiting student-athletes to NSU and established a strong coaching reputation in Australia. Joining a rebuilding NSU program, Harriman helped the Sharks post 48 victories during his tenure. A 17-win season in 2005-06 was the biggest turnaround in 15 years in Division II basketball. In 2007-08, he helped Tim Coenraad earn first-team NABC All-South Region honors.
As a player, Harriman had a short stint in his homeland Australia’s National Basketball League in 1997-98 with a traditional league power, the Sydney Kings. He moved to the United States and attended Augusta State (Ga.) University. Harriman tallied 627 points and 375 assists in his playing career at ASU and was named league Player of the Week in January 2003. As a senior, he led the Peach Belt Conference in steals. Harriman led ASU to two NCAA Division II Tournaments and one PBC North Division title, and he was a part of 78 victories.
After graduating from Augusta State in 2003, Harriman played the 2003-04 season with the Hunter Valley Pirates in the NBL and was runner-up for Rookie of the Year honors. After his professional playing career, Harriman joined the coaching staff at Nova Southeastern.
Harriman and his wife, Cheryl, have a son, Avery, and a daughter, Kacee.