Posted: Wednesday Feb 6, 2013
Feb. 6, 2013
Longtime Saint Vincent College Coach Tom “Legs” Harbert has been selected by the Executive Board of the Pennsylvania Wrestling Coaches Association to be inducted into the Pennsylvania Wrestling Hall of Fame, class of 2013.
The official ceremony will be held Sunday, May 19, at the Ramada Inn in State College. He will be inducted as a wrestler/coach-district 7.
As a wrestler, he was a WPIAL Section Champion at Wilkinsburg in 1960, and was the 115-pound PSAC State Champion at Shippensburg University and a four-time letter winner. He participated in the 1961 Olympic Trials, and was the 1983 U.S. Masters Champion. He also competed in AAU tournaments and the Keystone Games.
As a coach, Harbert served eight years as head coach of the Saint Vincent College wrestling team and 20 years as head coach at Greater Latrobe High School, where he compiled a 202-87-5 record. He coached 49 section champs, 7 WPIAL champs, 17 PIAA qualifiers, and 10 PIAA place winners and served as director of region IV of the Keystone State Games.
His past honors include: WPIAL team runner-up, 17 winning seasons, seven-time WPIAL section I wrestling coach of the year, 1985 WPIAL wrestling coach of the year. He coached WPIAL and Pennsylvania standouts in the 1985 Dapper Dan Classic, and has 25 years service with the National Wrestling Coaches Association.
He has been previously inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame for Lifetime Service, Shippensburg University Athletic Hall of Fame, Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, Southwestern Pennsylvania Wrestling Hall of Fame and Saint Vincent College Athletic Hall of Fame.
Harbert has also worked for 31 years as a PIAA wrestling official (Westmoreland chapter, charter member), has directed and worked numerous wrestling camps in Pennsylvania, had 28 years of involvement in Latrobe Junior Wrestling program, was featured in the Pennsylvania Legends of Wrestling Card Series, served as director of the Mat Men’s Club, and served on the board of directors of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame—East Boros.
In 1963 Harbert graduated from Shippensburg University with a BS in education, and in 1969 from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with his master’s degree in education. He continued his post-masters work and earned a supervisory certificate at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He instructed at Greater Latrobe High School for 30 years and at Westmoreland County Community College for 25 years. He has taught in the Challenge program at Saint Vincent College and worked as the alumni affairs associate at SVC.
Currently, Harbert, entering his 50th year as a head coach, continues to coach women’s cross country at Saint Vincent where he was integral in establishing the men’s and women’s varsity lacrosse programs as well as women’s cross country. He is also the director of the NIKE summer girl’s lacrosse camp.
Harbert’s sons have continued the wrestling tradition—Tad is the head wrestling coach at Greater Latrobe High School and Brent is the youth wrestling coach at Ligonier. Ryan and Josh Harbert, Tom's grandsons, are now wrestling in the youth program - the third generation on the mats.
Tom Harbert at Shippensburg in 1963
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