Hal Lahar
Hal Lahar in 1957.jpg
Lahar at Houston, circa 1957
Biographical details
Born(1919-07-14)July 14, 1919
Durant, Oklahoma
DiedOctober 20, 2003(2003-10-20) (aged 84)
Dallas, Texas
Playing career
1941Chicago Bears
1946–1948Buffalo Bills
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1950–1951Arkansas (assistant)
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
2 MVC (1957, 1959)

Harold Wade Lahar (July 14, 1919 – October 20, 2003) was an American football player and coach. He served as the head football coach at Colgate University (1952–1956, 1962–1967) and the University of Houston (1957–1961).

Lahar was born in Durant, Oklahoma and attended Central High School in Oklahoma City. He later was an All-Big Six Conference guard for the Oklahoma Sooners under coach Tom Stidham.[1] Lahar was selected 79th overall in the 1941 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears,[2] where he spent the 1941 NFL season before serving in the United States Navy in the South Pacific during World War II.

After leaving the service as a Lieutenant (junior grade) in 1945, Lahar played for the Buffalo Bills of the All-America Football Conference from 1946 to 1948[3] before beginning his college coaching career as an assistant under Otis Douglas at the University of Arkansas in 1950. In 1952, he became the 25th head coach at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York. In 1957, he succeeded Bill Meek at the University of Houston, where he spent five years, before returning to Colgate in 1962, making him the first man to return to a Division I head-coaching job after leaving for another school.[4] Following the 1967 season, Lahar retired from coaching and served as athletic director at Colgate. His overall coaching record at Colgate was 53–40–8.

Lahar was also assistant commissioner of the Southwest Conference. He worked at the now-defunct SWC from 1973 until his retirement in 1983. Upon his death in 2003, Lahar was buried in the Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery.

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Colgate Red Raiders (NCAA University Division independent) (1952–1956)
1952 Colgate 6–3
1953 Colgate 3–4–2
1954 Colgate 5–2–2
1955 Colgate 6–3
1956 Colgate 4–5
Colgate: 24–17–4
Houston Cougars (Missouri Valley Conference) (1957–1959)
1957 Houston 5–4–1 3–0 1st
1958 Houston 5–4 2–2 3rd
1959 Houston 3–7 3–1 1st
Houston Cougars (NCAA University Division independent) (1960–1961)
1960 Houston 6–4
1961 Houston 5–4–1
Houston: 24–23–2 8–3
Colgate Red Raiders (NCAA University Division independent) (1962–1967)
1962 Colgate 3–5–1
1963 Colgate 3–4–1
1964 Colgate 7–2
1965 Colgate 6–3–1
1966 Colgate 8–1–1
1967 Colgate 2–8
Colgate: 29–23–4
Total: 77–63–10
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title or championship game berth


  1. ^ The University of Oklahoma-Sooner Sports Archived March 17, 2008, at the Wayback Machine OU Football All Conference Honors
  2. ^ NFL Football Database Archived February 18, 2010, at the Wayback Machine Hal Lahar
  3. ^ The Encyclopedia of Pro Football In Western New York: 1900-1949[permanent dead link] by Jerome Collins and PFRA Western New York Committee
  4. ^ Colgate Raiders News Archived January 24, 2013, at archive.today "Harold Lahar, Former Colgate Coach-Athletic Director Dies"