James, who was inducted into the hall in 1997 after 18 years coaching the Huskies, died at his home after battling pancreatic cancer.
James amassed a 153-58-2 record with Washington from 1975-1992, guiding it to share of the 1991 national championship with Miami.
He also won six conference titles with the team.
"The guidance and leadership he instilled into this program and community are still felt today, and will continue to be felt here for a long, long time," current Huskies Coach Steve Sarkisian said in a statement.
James is survived by his wife, Carol; three children and 10 grandchildren.