Jim was nominated for basketball coaching. A 2001 inductee of the Illinois High School Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, Harrington coached at Elgin High School for 15 seasons (1985-2000) and posted a mark of 290-139. His winning percentage of .676 is second all-time at Elgin for those who coached the Maroons for at least 100 games. His teams won three sectional championships, three super-sectionals, and advanced to the Elite Eight three times. They also won 10 regional titles, six Upstate Eight Conference titles, five York Thanksgiving Tournament titles, and four Elgin Holiday Tournament Championships. Harrington is a four-time winner of the Courier News Coach of the Year award. Previous to coming to Elgin, Jim posted a 112-72 mark at Chicago Weber, giving him a career record of 402-211.