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Basketball coach John Chaney dies

Temple coach John Chaney at a game in 2006 Associated Press/Photo by Tony Tribble (file)

Basketball coach John Chaney dies

Hall of Fame college basketball coach John Chaney died on Friday at age 89 after a short illness. Chaney coached at Temple University from 1982 to 2006. He won six Atlantic 10 Conference titles, and he was twice named national coach of the year. Prior to joining Temple, he coached at Cheyney State University, where he won the 1978 Division II national championship and was twice the Division II coach of the year. He had 741 wins overall as a college coach and his Temple teams made the NCAA regional finals five times.

How is he remembered? Chaney was known for his temper on the court, once threatening to kill opposing coach John Calipari, who later became his friend. He was also known for his concern for his players’ lives beyond basketball. “Coach Chaney was like a father to me,” said Temple coach Aaron McKie, who played for Chaney. “He taught not just me, but all of his players more than just how to succeed in basketball. He taught us life lessons to make us better individuals off the court.” Chaney played at Bethune-Cookman College in the 1950s and was an NAIA all-American. As black players faced discrimination in the NBA, he played professional basketball for the Harlem Globetrotters and then in the Eastern Pro League.

Timothy Lamer

Tim is executive editor of WORLD Commentary. He previously worked for the Media Research Center in Alexandria, Va. His work has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Weekly Standard.

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