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Charlie Spoonhour passes away

Former Missouri State, Saint Louis and UNLV head coach Charlie Spoonhour has died after his battle with lung disease. He was 72.

Spoonhour began his coaching career at Missouri State in 1983 -- then known as Southwest Missouri State -- and guided the Bears to a 197-81 mark and five NCAA Tournament appearances in nine seasons with the school

"The entire Missouri State University family is deeply saddened by the passing of Coach Spoonhour," MSU athletic director Kyle Moats said. "His legacy is one of class, distinction and achievement, and he will be dearly missed by the many lives he touched in his many endeavors."

Spoonhour then brought his popular brand of offensive basketball -- known as "Spoonball" -- to Saint Louis in 1992. In seven seasons with the Billikens, Spoonhour compiled a 122-90 record and led the school to three NCAA Tournament appearances, including the school's first tournament appearance in 37 years in 1994. He also won the National Coach of the Year Award that season.

"Charlie was truly a great Billiken," Saint Louis athletics director Chris May said. "His commitment to his student-athletes, the University community and the St. Louis region helped energize the program like none other. Charlie was an unbelievably positive force in the history of our department. We are so proud that he will forever be associated with Billiken Basketball."

Spoonhour also served as UNLV's coach from 2001-2004, leading the Rebels to a 54-31 record.

Over 19 years as a Division I head coach, Spoonhour compiled a career mark of 373-202.