Dennis Kinne
Coach
​Inducted in 2004
Dennis started his teaching and coaching career at Suffield Academy as a 21-year old directly after graduating from Colby College in Maine. Planning to teach history, he was attracted to the Suffield position when he learned that he would step immediately into the boys varsity basketball head coach slot, and basketball was clearly in his blood. It turned out to be a great decision for both parties!  Dennis's boys teams went 327-127, winning five New England Class B Prep School championships, including three straight from 1983-1985. The boys were invited to 12 consecutive New England tournaments from 1978-89. He had one undefeated team in 1984. That club featured future NBA standout Vinny Del Negro. Making that season even more sweet for Dennis, the other guard was his son, Kevin. "Dennis was absolutely a large part of my development on the court and a positive influence off the court in terms of the confidence he had in me both as a player and a person" Del Negro said.  "He's just a tremendous person. He touched a lot of lives at Suffield."

At the end of the 1988 season, Dennis abruptly decided to call it quits. It seemed that the very capable JV Coach, Dave Godin, was actively seeking a head coaching position and Dennis didn't want to lose him, so Dennis stepped down and Dave stepped in.
Dennis's premature retirement lasted until 1991 when he decided to resume his coaching career, this time at the helm of the girls varsity team. There was no rust showing on his coaching skills. In his last decade with the boys he was 166 and 38. In his decade with the girls, he was an unbelievable 197-17! His girls teams also duplicated that feat of winning five New England Prep School Championships and rang up three undefeated seasons along the way. In two of those undefeated seasons, 1996 and 1997, Suffield was led by Meaghan Leahy who went on to play for Notre Dame University where she played on their NCAA Championship team. As Dennis would reflect, players like Vinny and Meaghan come along once in a coach's career and he was fortunate to have both of them.

When Dennis retired for good in 2001, he finished with 520 wins against only 165 losses, a 77% winning percentage, and ten New England Prep School Championship banners were hung in the Academy gymnasium.  In recognition of his outstanding career, Dennis was honored as one of the Top 100 Basketball Coaches of the Century by the Hartford Courant. He was the 2002 recipient of the New England Private School Athletic Directors Distinguished Service Award and, in 2003, was inducted into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame. At the conclusion of his 40 years of service as Suffield Academy's Athletic Director, the School honored him by naming the basketball facility the Dennis A. Kinne Court in 2003.