Daily Almanac for Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Will Robinson, who became the first African-American head basketball coach in NCAA Division I history when he accepted the position at Illinois State in 1970, died on this date in 2008. (photo courtesy Illinois State University News)

FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

 Robinson scouted for the Detroit Pistons for 28 years, and worked 22 years for the Detroit Lions as a part-time scout. Robinson, who is a member of seven athletic halls of fame, was also the first black high school coach in Michigan, winning two state championships in basketball.

In 1970 Robinson was hired as the head coach at Illinois State University, making him the first black head coach in NCAA Division I basketball. He compiled a record of 78-51 from 1970–75. His best player during that time was Doug Collins, the school’s only consensus All-American and the #1 pick in the 1973 NBA Draft. In 2003 Robinson received a lifetime achievement award from the Missouri Valley Conference.

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COURTESY www.almanac.com

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