Jonesboro High School basketball coach Wes Swift will be presented the 12th annual Buddy Harding Award during the Oct. 20 football game between the University of Central Arkansas and Northwestern State University. 

The award is presented to a University of Central Arkansas alumnus for Arkansas high school coaching excellence.

The award is sponsored by Harding’s UCA fraternity, Sigma Tau Gamma.

A native of Sherwood, Swift is a 1994 graduate of UCA. 

In 23 years as a head basketball coach, his teams have won five state championships: one at Hughes (2001), one at Lonoke (2008) and three at Jonesboro (2014, 2017 and 2018). 

He has a career record of 482-216, including 220-54 in his nine seasons at Jonesboro.

He has coached in four Arkansas High School Coaches All-Star basketball games. 

Swift was named the 2001 and 2017 Arkansas Preps Coach of the Year.

His 2017 team went 32-0 and was ranked fifth in the nation.

He was named the 2017 MaxPreps National Coach of the Year. 

The award is named in honor of Rush “Buddy” Harding, Jr., who graduated from UCA in 1951.

Harding went on to spend over 30 years at Clarendon High School as a coach and administrator.

He is a member of the UCA Sports Hall of Fame and the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame.