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Obituaries » John Chaney, Hall of Fame college basketball coach, dead at 89

John Chaney, Hall of Fame college basketball coach, dead at 89

Image source: Twitter – @ballislife

Temple University basketball’s Hall of Fame head coach, John Chaney, has died. He was 89.

It has been reported by the university that Chaney died of an unspecified illness.

Chaney was a defensive stalwart who led Temple to 17 NCAA tournament appearances during his 24-year tenure at the school. The only year his team did not make the tournament was his first year as a coach, during the 1982-83 season.

Chaney led Temple to the Elite Eight five times during his two-decades-long tenure there and the team held a number one ranking in 1987-88 – the year the Owls went 32-2, with an 18-0 record in the Atlantic 10. Favored to win the national championship that year, the Owls season was cut short with a loss to Duke University in the regional finals.

Chaney also found success in the division II ranks, leading Cheyney State to eight national tournaments, while winning the whole thing in 1978.

“John Chaney was a great coach, but he was so much more. For generations of Temple University students, he was a wise counselor, a dedicated teacher, an icon of success, and a passionate leader who always led by example and with conviction,” Temple president Richard M. Englert said in a statement. “I am also honored to say he was a dear friend.

Chaney was elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2001 and the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006. He ranks among the top 40 college basketball coaches in any era wit 516 wins at Temple and 741 wins overall.

He was the first Black coach to reach 700 wins.