Ira Harge Jr.

Ira Harge Jr. holds his blue trophy for his fourth consecutive 2A state basketball championship. Harge will take over as Española's athletic director in June.

    Last month, Ira Harge Jr. won his fourth-straight state championship. After a rocky start, the 2A Pecos boys basketball coach built a dynasty with the program. After winning state he decided he had enough of coaching.

    Harge now takes over as athletic director for Española Valley High School.

    “(Harge) brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the athletic department,” wrote Española Public Schools Superintendent Fred Trujillo in an email. “He is a proven winner who makes those around him successful as well.”

    Trujillo was also recently hired from Pecos, where he served as superintendent. Harge said Trujillo had mentioned the opportunity to follow him to Española and become the athletic director.

    “I don’t know if I’m done coaching, but for now I am,” said Harge, who said that he had been hoping to enter administration.

    Harge grew up in Albuquerque and attended San Diego State University and the University of Denver. Recently, he also had a job that he was working in Española, and said he was familiar with the area.

    “There’s just a lot of talent there,” Harge said of Española. “Athletically, there’s a lot of potential. I’m looking forward to helping the coaches get those players and athletes to another level.”

    At Pecos, Harge’s tenure had a rocky start. He set a goal to win a state title in his first season, but finished 6-22. Slowly, however, he built a dynasty. The last four years, Pecos went 113-8.

    Harge said his first tasks are to hire new coaches for football and basketball. Then, he hopes to improve all of the sports programs.

    “My goal would be to get participation up in all the sports, not just basketball,” Harge said.

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