Former KSU basketball coach Tex Winter passes away

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Former Kansas State men's basketball coach Fred 'Tex' Winter passed away on Wednesday in Manhattan, Kan.

Winter coached at KSU from 1954-1968. During that time, he led the Wildcats to a 261-118 record along with eight conference titles and two Final Four appearances. The 261 wins is second all-time in school history. Only Jack Hartman coached the Wildcats to more wins, with 295.

Winter also served as an assistant to Phil Jackson on 11 NBA Championship teams with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers.

"We are saddened by the passing of such a legendary coach in Fred “Tex” Winter, who touched nearly every level of basketball," said current KSU men's basketball coach Bruce Weber in a statement. "Obviously, he is known for his success as an assistant to Phil Jackson with the Bulls and Lakers during their run to 11 NBA titles. However, he left a tremendous mark of achievement at Kansas State, including two Final Fours. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Nancy, his children, Brian, Chris and Russ, and grandchildren during this difficult time.”

In an statement to the Chicago Tribune, Michael Jordan said, "I learned so much from Coach Winter. He was a pioneer and a true student of the game. His triangle offense was a huge part of our six championships with the Bulls."

After his coaching career, Winter was inducted into the National College Basketball Hall of Fame in Kansas City in 2010 and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011. He is also a member of the state of Kansas and Kansas State University halls of fame. 

“Today is a sad day for not only Kansas State University but also the entire basketball world with the passing of Coach Winter," Director of Athletics Gene Taylor said in a statement. "He transformed the game of basketball at all levels and will always remain an integral piece of our rich basketball tradition here at K-State. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Winter family during this time. He will certainly be missed by the entire K-State family.”

Winter was 96 years old.

Memorial services have not been announced.

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