The 447 career wins, a state title and too many MVC and Christmas Tournament titles to count have and will propel Dick Licare into more than his share of Halls of Fame.
Rick Nault chooses to lend his own, clearly more intangible reasoning, to assess Licare’s greatness over 27 years as the Central Catholic boys basketball coach.
“He always conducted himself with such class, but I was most impressed by the way he always knew what button to push at the right time in the big games,” said Nault, who played for, assisted with and ultimately took over for Licare at Central after the 2005-06 season. “I’m not sure if it was instinct, or gut, or whatever, it always seemed to work out for him and for Central.”
Licare, who now lives in Texas, flew in this weekend, not just to visit for the holiday. Sunday night, he’ll be inducted into the Massachusetts Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame at a ceremony being held at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester.
The man who revived not just basketball, but arguably all athletics, taking over after a storied career at both North Andover High and Merrimack College, will join his dad, Bob Licare Sr., in the MBCA Hall.
“I think that is what makes it most special, to be in the same Hall of Fame as my father,” said Licare. “Of course, I grew up around a lot of Hall of Fame coaches, guys like my father and Will Hixon. It’s a huge reason I got here.”
Dick’s younger brother, Bob will present Licare for the Hall induction. Former players and close friends like David Fazio, Leo Parent and Don Doucette will attend.
“It starts with the players and you just don’t win if you don’t have great players,” said Licare, now 55. “I had so many great ones over the years.”