Benny Dees

Benny Dees (1934-2021)

Teams coached: VCU Rams, New Orleans Privateers, Wyoming Cowboys, Western Carolina Catamounts
VCU record^: 25-21 (.543)
New Orleans record: 42-16 (.724)
Wyoming record: 104-77 (.575)
Western Carolina record: 26-30 (.464)
Overall record^: 197-144 (.578)

Career Accomplishments:

  • NCAA National Championships:  0
  • NCAA Tournament Appearances:  2  (1987, 1988)
  • NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen:  0
  • NIT Championships:  0
  • NIT Appearances:  1  (1991)
  • WAC Tournament Champion:  1  (1988)

Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

1993-1995 Western Carolina
1987-1993 Wyoming
1985-1987 New Orleans
1980-1985 Alabama (asst)
1979-1980 Georgia Tech (women’s)
1977-1979 Georgia Tech (asst)
1970-1973 Western Kentucky (asst)
1968-1970 VCU
1962-1967 Abraham Baldwin Agricultural

Benny Dees Facts

  • Benny Dees
  • Born December 29, 1934
  • Died March 23, 2021
  • Hometown: Mount Vernon, Georgia
  • Alma Mater: University of Wyoming (BA, 1958)
  • Played baseball and basketball at Wyoming, the latter for Hall of Fame coach Everett Shelton
  • Served as the head basketball coach at Abraham Baldwin JC (GA) for five seasons
  • Became the first ever men’s basketball coach at (then D-II) VCU, going 25-21 in two seasons
  • Spent three seasons as one of John Oldham‘s assistants at Western Kentucky
  • Was as an assistant at Georgia Tech for two seasons under head coach Dwane Morrison
    • Spent one season as the head women’s basketball coach at GT, going 8-19 (1-6)
  • Joined Wimp Sanderson‘s staff at Alabama in 1980, spending five years as an assistant with the Tide
  • Hired as the head coach at New Orleans in 1985; led program to first ever D-I NCAA Tournament in 1987
  • Returned to alma mater Wyoming in 1987, leading the Cowboys for six seasons
    • Won the 1988 WAC Tournament to reach the NCAA Tournament, then reached the NIT in 1991
    • Went 104-77 overall, but was fired in 1993 after a 13-15 season
  • Finished his college coaching career at Western Carolina, going 26-30 in two seasons there
  • Coached HS basketball in Georgia after WCU; retired in 2010 as head coach at Toombs County HS
  • Passed away in 2021 at age 86; survived by wife, Nancy, and son, Josh, who played for him at Wyoming and Western Carolina

Benny Dees Coaching Tree

  • Billy Kennedy (Texas A&M, Murray State, Southeastern Louisiana, Centenary)
  • Art Tolis (New Orleans)


^ overall record includes head coaching positions at the NCAA Division I and Division II levels only