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2012 Notable Sports Deaths

2012 Deaths,0021

Jan. 1 — Jorge Martinez Boero, 38, Argentine bike rider on the first day of the Dakar Rally.

Jan. 1 — Gary Ablett, 46, the only player to win the FA Cup with both Liverpool and Everton.

Jan. 1 — Tommy Mont, Jr., 89, former DePauw football coach.

Jan. 2 — Bob Anderson, 89, Olympic fencer and movie sword master who appeared in some of film's most famous dueling scenes. Anderson represented Britain at the 1952 Olympics and the 1950 and 1953 world championships. He donned Darth Vader's black helmet and fought light saber battles in two of the three original "Star Wars" films, "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi."

Jan. 2 — Jim Huber, 67, longtime broadcaster for CNN/Sports Illustrated and Turner Sports.

Jan. 3 — Gene Bartow, 81, one of the winningest NCAA Division I basketball coaches with 647 wins over 34 seasons. Bartow succeeded John Wooden as UCLA's coach in 1976 and led the Bruins to the Final Four. He left after two seasons to start Alabama-Birmingham's program. He was UAB's coach from 1978-96 before handing the reins to his son. Bartow coached Memphis State from 1970-74 and guided the school to the 1973 national championship game, where the Tigers lost to a UCLA team coached by Wooden.

Jan. 3 — Charles "Lefty" Smith, 81, former Notre Dame hockey coach who started the school's hockey program in 1968. Smith compiled a 307-320-30 record in 19 seasons from 1968-1987.

Jan. 3 — Ray Costict, 56, former New England Patriots linebacker. Costict, who played four years at Mississippi State, spent his entire NFL career with the Patriots from 1977-79, primarily as a special teams player.

Jan. 4 — Mitch Shirota, 78, veteran trainer and jockey at Churchill Downs and elsewhere. The Hawaiian-born Shirota saddled 236 winners from 1,637 career starters. Before that, he was a jockey for 15 years in Mexico, Churchill Downs and other Kentucky tracks in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Jan. 4 — Byron Donzis, 79, inventor of the football flak jacket.

Jan. 5 — Don Carter, 85, bowling's original superstar. He became his sport's most recognizable name when bowling was a fixture on TV. Carter became a leading force in the formation of the PBA in 1958. He was voted Bowler of the Year six times, served as the PBA's first president and became a charter member of the PBA Hall of Fame in 1975.

Jan. 7 — Julian Garrett, 94, former Texas football lineman. Garrett was the last surviving member of a group of Longhorn players featured on the cover of Life Magazine during the season of 1941.

Jan. 8 — Lewis Cenicola, 66, thoroughbred trainer who served as exercise rider for Hall of Fame gelding John Henry in the late 1970s and early '80s. Cenicola won 279 races as a trainer. Before that, he was a jockey for more than a decade.

Jan. 9 — Vince Gibson, 78, former Kansas State, Louisville and Tulane football coach. Gibson compiled a 75-98-2 record as a college coach.

Jan. 10 — Ron Caron, 82, former St. Louis Blues general manager. Nicknamed the "Old Professor," Caron was a longtime assistant GM for the Canadiens and helped build the Montreal teams that won Stanley Cups in 1971 and '73 and four straight titles from '76-'79.

Jan. 11 — Edgar F. Kaiser Jr., 69, former Denver Broncos owner who oversaw the trade that brought Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway to Denver. Kaiser sold his 60.8 percent share of the Broncos to the current owner, Pat Bowlen, in 1984.

Jan. 12 — Jim Stanley, 77, former Oklahoma State football coach. Stanley was head coach at OSU from 1973-78 and led the Cowboys to a 35-31-2 record and to a share of the Big Eight title and a Tangerine Bowl victory in 1976.

Jan. 13 — Lefter Kucukandonyadis, 86, one of the best players in Turkish soccer history. Kucukandonyadis was the captain of Turkey's national team, making 46 appearances for his country. He scored 423 goals in 615 games for Fenerbahce.

Jan. 13 — Miljan Miljanic, 81, a Serb who once coached Real Madrid, Yugoslavia and Red Star Belgrade. Miljanic took the Yugoslav national team to the 1974 and 1982 World Cups. He won four league titles and three cups with Red Star between 1966 and 1974 during the glory days of Yugoslav soccer. He then captured back-to-back Spanish titles and a Copa del Rey trophy with Real Madrid between 1974 and 1977.

Jan. 16 — Selorm Kuadey, 24, former England Sevens international. The talented rugby player was forced to retire in 2010 because of an ankle injury.

Jan. 17 — Marty Springstead, 74, former major league baseball umpire. Springstead was an American League umpire from 1966-85 and worked the World Series in 1973, 1978 and 1983. he also was an umpire at the All-Star game in 1969, 1975 and 1982 and at five AL championship series.

Jan. 19 — Sarah Burke, 29, Canadian freestyle skier. Burke, a four-time Winter X Games champion, died nine days after crashing at the bottom of the superpipe during a training run in Utah. She set the standard for skiing in the superpipe, a sister sport to the more popular snowboarding brand.

Jan. 20 — Jiri Raska, 70, Czech Olympic ski jump champion. Raska won the Olympic competition in Grenoble, France in 1968 to become the first Czech to win the gold at the Winter Olympics. He also took the silver medal at the same Olympics at the large hill. He also won the prestigious Four-Hill Tour in 1971.

Jan. 22 — Joe Paterno, 85, longtime Penn State coach who won more games than anyone in major college football but was fired amid a child sex abuse scandal that scarred his reputation for winning with integrity. Paterno built his program on the credo "Success with Honor," and he found both. The man known as "JoePa" won 409 games and took the Nittany Lions to 37 bowl games and two national championships. More than 250 of the players he coached went on to the National Football League.

Jan. 22 — Jim Irwin, 77, the voice of the Green Bay Packers for three decades. Irwin worked as a color analyst for Packers games on WTMJ-AM from 1969 until 1975. He then worked as a play-by-play announcer until he retired at the end of the 1998 season. Irwin also called Milwaukee Bucks and Wisconsin Badgers games.

Jan. 22 — Andy Musser, 74, sports announcer for 45 years and a Philadelphia Phillies broadcaster for a quarter-century. Musser retired in 2001 after 25 years with the Phillies. He also covered the World Series, Eagles and 76ers games, and Big Five basketball.

Jan. 22 — JR Boone, 86, former NFL player and Fresno State football coach. Boone coached at Fresno State from 1973-75, posting a 10-24 record. Boone was drafted by the Chicago Bears and the New York Yankees but chose to play football. He played with the Bears from 1948 to 1951, one season with the San Francisco 49ers and one with the Green Bay Packers.

Jan. 26 — Dr. Joseph Mattioli, 86, Pocono Raceway founder and chairman. Known as "Doc" to friends and associates, Mattioli founded Pocono Raceway in the early 1960's and ran the speedway for more than four decades with his wife Rose. Under his leadership, the track grew and has hosted 68 very successful NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events.

Jan. 26 — Doug MacIver, 58, form CFL player. MacIver played on the defensive line for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers from 1982-1984 after spending the previous six seasons with Saskatchewan and Toronto. He was part of the 1984 Grey Cup Championship team.

Jan. 28 — Don Fullmer, 72, former middleweight boxer who fought nine world champions. Fullmer, the brother of former world middleweight champion Gene Fullmer, fought in 79 matches, losing to such former champions as Dick Tiger, Jose Torres, Joey Archer and Emile Griffith during a career that spanned from 1957 to 1973. He defeated Griffith and Archer in rematches before losing to Nino Benvenuti in 1966. In a 1968 rematch with Benvenuti for the middleweight title, Fullmer knocked the Italian down but lost a 15-round unanimous decision.

Jan. 30 — Joseph Curran, 89, former Canisius men's basketball coach. Curran led team to three consecutive NCAA tournament appearances in the 1950s. Curran was 76-66 coaching the Golden Griffins from 1953-59, and is the program's only coach to win a tournament game. The victory in 1956 was memorable as Canisius upset No. 2 North Carolina State 79-78 in four overtimes.

Jan. 31 — David Bartek, 59, former Texas running back. Bartk played under coach Darrell Royal and was backup fullback to two eventual All-Americans, Roosevelt Leaks, and Earl Campbell.

Feb. 1 — Charlie Spoonhour, 72, former men's basketball coach at Missouri State, St. Louis and UNLV. Spoonhour spent nine seasons at Missouri State, then known as Southwest Missouri State, and went 197-81 with five NCAA tournament appearances. He left for St. Louis in 1992, compiling a 122-90 record in seven seasons with three NCAA appearances. He retired briefly then returned to coaching at UNLV, going 54-31 in three seasons and retired following the 2003-04 season.

Feb. 1 — Angelo Dundee, 90, the brilliant motivator who worked the corner for Muhammad Ali in his greatest fights and willed Sugar Ray Leonard to victory in his biggest bout. A master motivator and clever corner man, Dundee was regarded as one of the sport's great ambassadors. He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1994 after a career that spanned six decades, training 15 world champions, including Leonard, George Foreman, Carmen Basilio and Jose Napoles.

Feb. 1 — Wayne Kelly, 63, boxing referee who officiated several notable bouts. Kelly's career spanned over two decades. He was remembered best for officiating the first fight between Riddick Bowe and Andrew Golota. He also officiated several IBF/USBA title fights including Wladimir Klitschko vs. Sultan Ibrigamov and Arturo Gatti vs. Wilson Rodriguez.

Feb. 2 — Tyronne Duplessis, 21, Louisiana Tech running back.

Feb. 2 — Robert B. Cohen, 86, former college basketball player and thoroughbred horse owner. Cohen played basketball at New York University, where he was teammates with Dolph Schayes, who later played professionally for Syracuse and Philadelphia and was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Cohen also owned racehorses, and one of his thoroughbreds, Hudson County, finished second in the 1974 Kentucky Derby.

Feb. 5 — Kyle Allen, 21, Presbyterian football player.

Feb. 7 — Harry Keough, 84, former Saint Louis University soccer coach. Keough coached the Billikens to five NCAA soccer titles. His first team was NCAA co-champion in 1967, and he went on to coach them to titles in 1969, 1970, 1972 and 1973. He retired after the 1982 season with a record of 213 wins, 50 losses and 22 ties. Keough played for the U.S. soccer team that famously upset England at the 1950 World Cup. The 1-0 win over England in the Americans' second World Cup game is regarded by many as the greatest upset in soccer history.

Feb. 7 — Danny Clyburn Jr., 37, former major league outfielder. Clyburn was a second-round pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1992 and played parts of three seasons in the majors with the Baltimore Orioles and Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the late 1990s.

Feb. 7 — Randy Anderson, 46, former Clemson quarterback. During most of his time at Clemson, from 1984-87, Anderson was backup quarterback to Rodney Williams.

Feb. 9 — Jill Kinmont Boothe, 75, skiing champion who became a painter and a teacher after she was paralyzed during a race. At age 18, the Los Angeles native was the national women's slalom champion. She was trying to make the U.S. Olympic team in 1955 when she crashed and broke her neck. She was paralyzed below her shoulders.

Feb. 9 — James L. "Babe" Hallmark, 86, Tyler Junior College football coach and an All-Southwest Conference player at Texas A&M. He played for the famed A&M "Kiddie Corps" in the 1940s and led the team to the 1944 Orange Bowl. Hallmark was the head coach at Tyler from 1963-69.

Feb. 9 — Paul Resler, 71, former Oklahoma and Northwestern football player. Resler played under Bud Wilkinson in 1959-61. He went to Northwestern and played under Art Parkhurst.

Feb. 9 — Billy Proulx, 70, former assistant football coach and head recruiter for the University of Miami (Fla.) under five different head coaches, ending with Coach Howard Schnellenberger. Proulx later created and continued to produce the National Championship Coaches' Trophy for the American Football Coaches Association, as well as the National Championship Coaches' Trophies for the men's and women's collegiate basketball, all featuring the Waterford Crystal balls, through his company, Black Dog Sports, LLC.

Feb. 10 — Ivan Pravilov, 48, Ukrainian hockey coach. Pravilov was a mentor to several NHL and U.S. college players, including Dainius Zubrus of the New Jersey Devils, who played for him as a teen in the Ukraine.

Feb. 12 — Merle Dinkins, 87, former Oklahoma football player. Dinkins was an all-Big Six end in 1944.

Feb. 13 — Freddie Solomon, 59, former NFL wide receiver. The Dolphins selected Solomon in the second round of the 1975 draft out of the University of Tampa. He spent his first three NFL seasons with Miami and his final eight in San Francisco, finishing with 371 receptions for 5,846 yards and 48 touchdowns in 371 games. Solomon played on the first of the 49er's four Super Bowl championship teams in the 1980s during an 11-year NFL career.

Feb. 16 — Gary Carter, 57, Hall of fame catcher. Carter was an 11-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove winner. His bottom-of-the-10th single in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series helped the New York Mets mount a charge against the Boston Red Sox and eventually beat them. Carter played nearly two decades with the Mets, Montreal, San Francisco and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He led the Expos to their only playoff berth and was the first player enshrined in Cooperstown wearing an Expos cap. Overall, Carter hit .262 with 324 home runs and 1,225 RBIs.

Feb. 18 — Cal Murphy, 79, former CFL coach and general manager. Murphy was part of nine Grey Cup-winning teams as an assistant coach, head coach and CFL general manager. During a 14-year stint as the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' coach and GM the club made five Grey Cup appearances. Since 2000 he had been evaluating talent for the NFL's Indianapolis Colts. Murphy is second in career wins for the Bombers history with a record of 86-51-1. He was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 2004.

Feb. 22 — Tom Martinez, 67, longtime personal coach to New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Martinez was hired at College of San Mateo to coach football and teach physical education but added softball and women's basketball to his coaching load. His teams won 32 championships. He had 400 career wins in football, a state record 565 wins in basketball and 800 wins in softball over 32 years.

Feb. 23 — Mel Southard, 67, a former general counsel of the New York Yankees and chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission. Southard served as general counsel of the Yankee from 1982-1986. Southard also represented the NHL's New Jersey Devils and several Major League teams in arbitration hearings, including the Yankees and Cincinnati Reds. From 1996-2002, Southard was commissioner and chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission, which regulates professional boxing in New York.

Feb. 26 — Frank Mattox, 49, pro scout and one-time Seattle Mariners director of player development. Mattox had spent 18 seasons in the Mariners organization.

Feb. 28 — Marty Piraino, 88, winner of four tournaments on the Professional Bowlers Association Tour when the sport was just gaining a foothold on television. The 5-foot-6 left-hander turned pro in 1960. He captured his first PBA title in 1962, beating Dick Weber and Billy Hardwick to take the Civic Open in Ohio.

March 2 — Doug Furnas, 52, former Tennessee running back. Furnas also participated in and won a National Collegiate Powerlifting Championship. He still holds records set in 1983 in the squat (881.75 pounds) and deadlift (766 pounds) for the 242-pound weight class. Furnas ended his powerlifting career with 29 world records. Furnas also had a career in professional wrestling. He achieved most of his acclaim in pro wrestling as a member of the tag team Cam-Am Express with his partner, Phil Lafon.

March 3 — Alex Webster, 80, star running back for the New York Giants who later coached the team for four years. Webster played for New York from 1955-64 and was the head coach from 1969-1973. He gained 4,638 yards rushing and ran for 39 touchdowns. Webster led the Giants to a 9-5 record in 1970 in his second season as coach and was 29-40-1 overall.

March 3 — John Panelli, 85, former Notre Dame star running back and NFL player. Panelli played fullback and linebacker for Notre Dame's 1946 and 1947 national championship teams, averaging 7.5 yards a carry his senior year. He was a 1949 first-round draft pick for Detroit, playing two seasons with the Lions and three with the Chicago Cardinals.

March 4 — Don Mincher, 73, former Southern League president and major league baseball player. Mincher spent 13 years in the major leagues and was a two-time American League All-Star. He played for the 1972 World Series champion Oakland Athletics and had stints with Minnesota, California, Texas, Seattle and the Washington Senators. Mincher retired as Southern League president last October after holding the post since 2000.

March 4 — Casey Keltz, 79, former Montana Western men's basketball coach and athletics director. Keltz retired in 1996 with 409 career wins in 28 years. He twice took the Bulldogs to the NAIA national tournament.

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