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Former Missouri St. coach Spoonhour dies

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Charlie Spoonhour

Charlie Spoonhour announces his retirement as St. Louis University's basketball coach on March 5, 1999. (Lee News Service/Laurie Skrivan)

Charlie Spoonhour, one of St. Louis University's and Missouri State's most successful basketball coaches and one of the most popular members of his profession, died at his home in Chapel Hill, N.C., today at age 72.

Spoonhour had been in and out of the Duke University Medical Center for the past couple of years after getting a lung transplant there in 2010. He had been diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis -- a scarring of the lungs.

In seven seasons (1992-99) at St. Louis U., where "Spoonball" became a box-office hit, Spoonhour's teams compiled a 122-90 record, making three NCAA appearances. At Missouri State (then Southwest Missouri State), his teams were 197-81 in nine seasons (1983-92) with four NCAA bids.

He finished his coaching career at University of Nevada-Las Vegas from 2001-04 with a 57-31 mark.

"Spoon," as he affectionately was known, is survived by his wife, Vicki, and two sons, one of whom, Jay, is head basketball coach at Moberly (Mo.) Junior College.

Jay Spoonhour said this morning that his father had died peacefully surrounded by his family. He had gone home from the hospital just a couple of days before.

Arrangements are pending.



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