Donald Rowe

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Dee Rowe

Donald "Dee" Rowe is a former coach of the University of Connecticut men's basketball team.[1] He was born in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1929 and graduated from Worcester Academy in 1947. After graduating from Middlebury College and serving in the U. S. Army, Rowe returned to Worcester Academy in the fall of 1955 as the Athletic Director and head basketball coach. He quickly built the athletic program into a power in the New England prep school interscholastic athletics and, in addition, his basketball teams won the New England Prep School Championship nine times. In the spring of 1969, Rowe was hired as the head basketball coach at the University of Connecticut and he headed that program from 1969 until 1977. From 1972 to 1977, UConn had winning seasons with one NCAA appearance reaching the final 16, two NIT appearances, and three ECAC tournament appearances with one championship. In 1980, Dave Gavitt appointed Rowe to be an assistant coach of the U. S. Olympic men's basketball team. Rowe continues his involvement with both the Worcester Academy and the University of Connecticut.[2]

Rowe was unable to participate as assistant coach due to the US boycott of the 1980 Olympics. Rowe had a framed picture of the 1980 United States Olympic men's basketball team hanging on his office wall. Although he publicly expressed concern for other athletes, such as soccer players and track athletes who were unlikely to have sports careers after the Olympics, others knew the cancellation of the trip was important to him. Geno Auriemma the Connecticut women's basketball coach, often visited Rowe in his office and saw the picture every time. In 2010, Auriemma was named the head coach of the USA women's basketball team, scheduled to compete in several events, including the 2012 Olympics. In 2010, Auriemma was honored at the Winged Foot Club in New York City to receive an award. Rowe was the individual who "presented" Auriemma. As part of Auriemma's acceptance speech, Geno talked about Rowe's disappointment, and said he hoped to take Rowe with him. Rowe remembered hearing it at the time, but the discussion didn't come up again until 2012. As they were making preparations for the Olympics, Auriemma was trying to find a way to bring Rowe along. Auriemma could bring his team and staff members, but Rowe was not part of the USA Basketball staff. He spoke to Warde Manuel, the Connecticut athletic director, and proposed that Rowe be named a university ambassador. There were approximately 250 UConn alumni planning to make the trip, so Rowe could serve as the person to represent the school. The athletic director and Susan Herbst, the school president, supported the idea, so Dee Rowe was able to attend the Olympics in an official capacity.[3][4]

Head coaching record[edit]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Connecticut Huskies (Yankee Conference) (1969–1976)
1969–70 Connecticut 14-9 8-2 T–1st
1970–71 Connecticut 10-14 5-5 3rd
1971–72 Connecticut 8-17 5-5 T–4th
1972–73 Connecticut 15-10 9-3 2nd
1973–74 Connecticut 19-8 9-3 2nd NIT Quarterfinals
1974–75 Connecticut 18-10 9-3 2nd NIT First Round
1975–76 Connecticut 19-10 7-5 T–2nd NCAA Sweet Sixteen
Connecticut: 103–78 (.569) 52–26 (.667)
Connecticut Huskies (Independent) (1976–1977)
1976–77 Connecticut 17-10
Connecticut: 17–10 (.630)
Total: 120–88 (.577)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.uconnhooplegends.com/menslegends/RoweDonald.html U Conn Hoops
  2. ^ http://www.bates.edu/x65695.xml Bates College
  3. ^ Elsberry, Chris (December 26, 2012). "Chris Elsberry: Rowe makes Olympic trip after all". CT Post. Retrieved 26 Dec 2012. 
  4. ^ Chardis, Phil. "An Olympic Debt Repaid: Dee Rowe". UConn. Retrieved 30 July 2012.