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Barry Dowd, Texas men’s basketball player, coach and longtime college administrator, dies

Barry Dowd served as a Texas men's basketball assistant coach for six seasons and helped the Longhorns win the 1978 NIT championship under head coach Abe Lemons.

Barry Dowd, a Texas basketball player in the 1950s who later served as Abe Lemons' assistant during UT’s 1978 NIT championship run, died last Friday in Jonesboro, Ark. He was 85.

A Dallas native, Dowd played for the Longhorns from 1954 to 1958 and earned varsity letters during his sophomore season in 1955-56 and as a senior in the 1957-58 campaign. He was the head coach at UT-Arlington in 1966-76.

Dowd returned to Texas in 1976 to serve as one of Lemons’ assistants. Over the next six seasons, the Horns went 110-63 and won back-to-back Southwest Conference titles in addition to the NIT. 

More:Texas joins four-team tournament to honor former Longhorns coach Abe Lemons

Dowd was a part of the 1981-82 team that was ranked fifth in January 1982. It was also the first season any UT player led the NCAA in any statistical category. LaSalle Thompson averaged an NCAA-high 13.5 rebounds.

Dowd became president of the National Association of Basketball Coaches in 1978. He was the youngest president in NABC history at the time. He would serve on the board of directors for 10 years and as an NABC member for 54 years.

Dowd was the men’s head basketball coach and athletic director at East Tennessee State in 1982-85 and then a senior associate athletic director at Oklahoma State in 1990-94. He also was the athletic director at Arkansas State in 1996-2000.

Dowd and his wife, Janice, lived in Jonesboro for the past 25 years, according to a statement from UT. 

A celebration of life is scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday at the Jeter & Son Funeral Home in Dallas. The address is 4830 W. Illinois Ave. Visitation will begin at noon. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that any memorials be made to the Northeast Arkansas Cancer Society and Northeast Arkansas Humane Society.

Contact Brian Davis by phone or text at 512-445-3957. Email bdavis@statesman.com or @BDavisAAS.