UK Men's Basketball

Former UK star dies at 78

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio — Shelby Linville, who played on Kentucky's 1950-51 national championship basketball team, died Tuesday. He was 78.

Phil Linville said his father died of cancer Tuesday at a nursing home in Middletown.

Mr. Linville was the second-leading scorer on Adolph Rupp's 1950-51 squad that beat Kansas State in the NCAA Tournament championship game. He scored 17 points and hit the winning basket with 17 seconds to play in a semifinal victory over Illinois.

He is also remembered for scoring the first basket in Memorial Coliseum in the 1950 season opener against West Texas State.

Mr. Linville was born in Dayton, Ky., and moved to Middletown when he was 15. Mr. Linville's Middletown High School team won two state championships in the 1940s, and he was a member of the school's athletic hall of fame.

Mr. Linville was a teacher and coach at several schools and was a Baptist minister for more than 40 years. His son says he continued to conduct Bible studies at his home in Middletown until he entered the nursing home this spring.

Mr. Linville is survived by his wife, Yvonne; three sons; 10 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

Arrangements are pending.

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