Robert Eugene Bass (January 28, 1929 – August 17, 2018) was an American basketball coach and executive who worked in college basketball, the American Basketball Association (ABA), and the National Basketball Association (NBA).
|Born||January 28, 1929|
|Died||August 17, 2018 (aged 89)|
San Antonio, Texas
|High school||Rogers (Tulsa, Oklahoma)|
|College||Oklahoma Baptist (1947–1950)|
|1974–1976||San Antonio Spurs|
|Career highlights and awards|
Bass' professional coaching career started with the ABA's Denver Rockets (now the Denver Nuggets) in 1967, which he coached for two years. He coached college basketball at Texas Tech for a season-and-a-half from 1969 to 1971. He coached The Floridians of the ABA for two years before the team folded at the end of the 1972 season. The next season, he coached the Memphis Tams; and, at the beginning of the 1974/75 season, Bass was hired by the ABA's San Antonio Spurs, which he coached for nearly two seasons, until the franchise moved into the NBA in 1976 as part of the ABA–NBA merger.
At that point, Bass moved into the Spurs' front office, assuming the role of general manager. He would, over the years with the team, assume coaching duties on an interim basis as needed—in 1980, 1984, and 1992. He finished his coaching career with a 311-300 record. At the conclusion of the 1989/90 season, Bass won the NBA Executive of the Year Award. Bass would then take a general manager position with the Charlotte Hornets in 1995; in that capacity, he would win the award again in 1997. Bass retired in 2004 (by which time the Hornets had relocated to New Orleans).
Bass served as the head basketball coach at Oklahoma Baptist for 15 years and was named the NAIA Coach of the Year in 1967. In 1966, his team won the 1966 NAIA national title. He also led the Bison to the National Finals in 1965 and 1967.
Bass was hired as head coach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders replacing Gene Gibson. Bass cited a challenge to return to the college game and a distaste for the long pro season and its demands on his time away from family for accepting the position of head coach at Texas Tech.
In his first season, the Red Raiders posted a 14–10 record under Bass and finished third in the Southwest Conference (SWC) regular season standings. The 1969–70 team posted the first winning season for the Red Raiders in four years.
On January 15, 1971, Bass resigned to take the same position with The Floridians of the American Basketball Association after coaching the first 13 games of the 1970–71 Red Raiders season. The following day, Bass coach The Floridians to a 123–119 win over the Utah Stars in Miami. Former Red Raiders player and first-year assistant coach Gerald Myers was named interim head coach for the remainder of the season.
Bass died in his San Antonio home on August 17, 2018. He was 89.
Head coaching recordEdit
|Texas Tech Red Raiders (Southwest Conference) (1969–1971)|
|1970–71||Texas Tech||8–5[n 1]||1–0[n 1]|
Postseason invitational champion
- Bass resigned after the first 13 games of the 1970–71 season. Gerald Myers was named interim head coach for final 13 games.
- Rogers, Glenn (June 11, 1990). "Bass Lands TSN Honor". The Sporting News. p. 40.
- HORNETS: Hornets General Manager Bob Bass Retires
- Men's Basketball - Texas Tech Red Raiders :: The Official Athletic Site Archived 2008-04-21 at the Wayback Machine
- Henry, Don (January 16, 1971). "'Itch For Pros' Lures Bass Away". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. pp. 1B, 2B.
- Pettit, Burle (January 16, 1971). "Cage Coach Returns To Pro Circuit". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. pp. 1A, 11A.
- "Floridians Greet Bass With Win". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. January 17, 1971. pp. 1B.
- Orsborn, Tom (August 17, 2018). "Former Spurs GM Bob Bass dies after series of strokes". mysanantonio.com. Retrieved August 18, 2018.