Harrington named director of basketball operations for Illini

John Supinie

Former Illinois guard Sean Harrington is returning home. A sharpshooter who was a part of 99 wins during his Illini career, Harrington was named director of basketball operations Thursday. He replaces Rod Cardinal, a long-time member of the Illini basketball staff as a trainer and operations personnel.

"I'm really excited to come back,'' Harrington said. "Obviously, I really enjoyed my four years there. It's always been a dream to go back to the school where you played.''

Harrington's playing career ended in 2003, the final year for the Illini under coach Bill Self. Harrington met coach Bruce Weber after his hire that spring, then kept in contact over the years. Harrington and Illini assistant Jerrance Howard were Illini teammates.

Harrington served in the same position at Saint Louis University last season. He also spent three years at Northern Illinois, including one season as an assistant coach and two more in the operations office. He worked as an administrative assistant and video coordinator for one season at Kansas.

A former star at Elgin High School and a co-captain his senior season with Howard and Brian Cook, Harrington was a three-time academic all-Big Ten selection. He scored 750 points and finished with 222 assists duyring his Illini career and remains fifth in school history in career 3-point field-goal shooting at 42.8 percent. Harrington is sixth in career 3-pointers with 191.

"He's been around basketball his entire life, growing up as the son of a coach and playing for his father, Jim, who was one of the great coaches in Illinois high school basketball history,'' Weber said. "Sean has gained great experience in this business over the last five years.''

Cardinal moves to a special projects position in the athletic department, allowing him to continue reducing his role.

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