STORRS, Conn. — Former UConn males’s basketball coach Donald “Dee” Rowe, who served for greater than 5 a long time as an envoy for the college’s athletic division and as a mentor for coaches together with Jim Calhoun and Geno Auriemma, died Sunday. He was 91.

Rowe was employed as UConn coach in March 1969 and was on the bench for eight years, main the Huskies to the spherical of 16 in 1976. He was named New England Coach of the 12 months twice, in 1970 and 1976.

After retiring as coach in 1977, Rowe launched the fundraising arm of UConn athletics and performed a key function in elevating cash to construct the college’s on-campus basketball enviornment, Gampel Pavilion.

In 1980, Dave Gavitt selected Rowe as an assistant coach for the U.S. Olympic males’s basketball crew, which by no means acquired to play due to the U.S. boycott of the Video games within the Soviet Union.

Rowe additionally was a member of the search committees that introduced Corridor of Fame coaches Calhoun and Auriemma to UConn.

“I discovered from Dee simply by watching, how he carried himself, simply the best way he was,” Auriemma mentioned Sunday. “He carried himself round like an previous transfer star from the ’30s and ’40s. I believed to myself, ‘Man, if I can coach lengthy sufficient and develop as much as be like him, I will be the happiest man on the earth.”‘

In 2007, Rowe grew to become a member of the inaugural class of UConn basketball’s “Huskies of Honor” with a plaque in Gampel Pavilion. In 2017, he acquired the John W. Bunn Lifetime Achievement Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Corridor of Fame.

Rowe was born Jan. 20, 1929, in Worcester, Massachusetts. He performed at Middlebury Faculty within the early 1950s and earned a grasp’s diploma in training from Boston College in 1953.

He served as athletic director and basketball coach from 1955 to 1969 at Worcester Academy, constructing the college right into a nationwide prep college basketball energy.

Rowe’s mixed 21-year head-coaching report at Worcester Academy and UConn was 300-132.

“From that day in Could of 1986 when Dee informed me I wanted to simply accept the problem and take the UConn teaching job, he has at all times been in my nook rooting for me, my household, and my groups,” Calhoun mentioned in a press release. “Dee Rowe is a once-in-a-lifetime mentor who had a relentless pursuit of serving to individuals and doing good. He is not going to, and can’t, be duplicated or changed.”

Rowe was preceded in demise by his spouse, Ginny, in 2018. That they had seven youngsters and 17 grandchildren.

Funeral preparations had not been introduced Sunday afternoon.

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