Ask knowledgeable fans of boys' basketball in Maine about the distinctive characteristics of an Art Dyer-coached team and the answers will probably sound like they came from the same script - including his penchant for "teaching the game to be played the way it was meant to be played."
Dyer began his 32-year career in Maine School Administrative District 6 in 1970 at Medomak. He remembers, "This was mainly a baseball-oriented community, as are most coastal towns. I had to show them we could win basketball games." Dyer did just that. He took over the Medomak Valley High School boys' program and led the Panthers to the regional tournament 10 years straight, playing in Western Class B finals six times and winning four championships with state titles in 1977 and 1980. The Panthers compiled a record of 184-44 during his 10 years at MVHS.
Ernie Boggs graduated from Medomack Valley in 1976 and remembers playing for Dyer. In Boggs' junior and senior seasons the Panthers were18-0 and 16-2. "I still have fond memories of the days when we had our run," he writes. "Your teaching and coaching inspired me more than you will ever know. I believe the foundation you gave me is still guiding me to this day and I want to thank you for that guidance. I still teach fundamentals to the children I coach. Hopefully, I will leave them with a small fraction of the impact you had on my life."
In 1980, Dyer assumed control of Westbrook High's program. During the next 10 years he led the Blue Blazes to the tournament nine times, playing in four Western Class A championship games. In 1984, Westbrook won the state Class A title, defeating Lawrence 88-66. Dyer's record at Westbrook High was 137-56 in the regular season and 20-10 in postseason play.
During his 20 coaching seasons, Dyer had a record of 336-109, led teams to the tournament 19 times, coached in 10 Western Maine championship games - winning 5 of those - and captured 3 gold balls.
In 1991, he was named an assistant coach in Division 1 at Fairfield University in Connecticut. During his time there, the Stags won the MAAC once, earned one berth in the NCAA tournament and another in the NIT tournament.
He is a seven-time Coach of the Year selection by the Maine High School Coaches Association and the Maine Basketball Coaches Association. He was also named Southern Maine Athletic Association Coach of the Year four times and received the Richard A. Costello Award for achievement in sports from the University of Southern Maine. In 1972, he received the SMAA's Dedicated Service Award.
Dyer also coached teams in the Boston Shootout, as well as in Taiwan & Spain, and coached against the Russian Junior Olympic Team.
He is one of the founders of the Maine State Basketball Coaches Association and the Gold Star Basketball Academy.
Dyer retired from coaching in 1998. He resides in Harpswell with his wife Elizabeth. They have two sons, Michael and Stephen, a daughter-in-law Linda and granddaughter Izabella.
Maine Sports Hall of Fame
P.O. Box 2
Cumberland, ME 04021
Phone (207) 712-1748
The Maine Sports Hall of Fame was established in 1972 for the purpose of: 1) appointing and bestowing recognition awards and scholarships to outstanding Maine high school scholar-athletes; and, 2) to formally honor and memorialize Maine athletes and sports figures who have brought distinction and honor to the state of Maine.