Bob King

Bob King (1923-2004)

Teams coached: New Mexico Lobos, Indiana State Sycamores
New Mexico record: 175-89 (.663)
Indiana State record: 61-24 (.718)
Overall record: 236-113 (.676)

Career Accomplishments:

  • NCAA National Championships:  0
  • NCAA Tournament Appearances:  1  (1968)
  • NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen:  1  (1968)
  • NCAA Tournament Final Four:  0
  • NIT Championships:  0  (Runner-up in 1964)
  • NIT Appearances:  5  (1964, 1965, 1967, 1977, 1978)
  • WAC Regular Season Champion:  3  (1964, 1968, 1969)

Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

1975-1978 Indiana State
1962-1972 New Mexico
1960-1962 Iowa (asst)

Bob King Facts

  • Bob King
  • Born August 24, 1923
  • Died December 10, 2004
  • Hometown: Gravity, Iowa
  • Alma Mater: University of Iowa (BA, 1947) / Drake University (MS, 1957)
  • Was an All-State basketball player at Gravity HS (IA) and then played freshman basketball for the hometown Iowa Hawkeyes
  • Started his basketball coaching career at the high school level in Iowa and Illinois
    • Compiled a 205-75 record over 12 years at Britt HS (IA), Algona HS (IA) and Rockford West HS (IL)
    • Also served as an Officer in the United States Air Force from 1943-46
  • Returned to his alma mater in 1960, joining the staff of head basketball coach Sharm Scheuerman
  • Hired to be the head coach at New Mexico in 1962, leading the Lobos for the next ten seasons
    • In his second season, led the Lobos to a Runner-up finish in the 1964 NIT
    • Won three WAC regular season titles, went to three NITs and one NCAA (a Sweet Sixteen berth in 1968)
    • King’s success as head coach led to the opening of The Pit in 1966, which originally held nearly 15K seats
      • UNM dedicated the playing surface at “The Pit” to King in 1992, renaming it “Bob King Court”
    • Inducted into the Albuquerque Sports HOF (c/o 1982) and the University of New Mexico Athletic HOF (c/o 1987)
  • Stepped down from coaching in 1972 to become the Assistant AD at New Mexico
    • Left UNM after he was not offered the AD role when it became available the following year
  • Headed back to the Midwest in 1973, becoming the athletic director at Indiana State University
    • Served as the Sycamores’ head basketball coach from 1975-78, noted for the arrival and stardom of Larry Bird
    • Handed the program over to assistant Bill Hodges in 1978; Bird and Hodges led the Sycamores all the way to the NCAA Championship game for a showdown with Michigan State star Earvin “Magic” Johnson, which the Spartans won
    • Other achievements in his time as AD include moving the football program into the Division I Missouri Valley, an NCAA championship in men’s gymnastics and the career of four-time Olympic medal-winning wrestler Bruce Baumgartner
    • Inducted into the Indiana State University Athletics HOF (c/o 1999) and the Missouri Valley HOF (c/o 2014)
  • Survived by his wife, Sharel, four sons and two daughters

Bob King Coaching Tree