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Legendary Kentucky basketball coach Joe B. Hall dies at 93

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Kentucky basketball coaching legend Joe B. Hall died, the school announced Saturday.

He was 93.

Hall replaced Adolph Rupp as coach in Lexington in 1972 and guided the Wildcats until 1985, compiling a 297-100 record with 10 NCAA tournament appearances, three Final Fours and a national title in 1978. Hall remained a fixture in Lexington until his death.

He also played for Rupp on the Wildcats' 1949 team that won the national title, making Hall one of three men who played and coached on an NCAA championship team. Dean Smith and Bobby Knight are the others. Hall is the only one to do it at the same school. 

Hall, who served as his assistant for seven years under Rupp before taking over as head coach, also coached at Regis College in Denver and Central Missouri State. Hall had a 373-156 career coaching record.

Hall also helped fully integrate the men's basketball program at Kentucky. Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton was the first Black assistant coach in UK basketball history. He was hired by Hall.

Kentucky coach John Calipari praised Hall on Saturday for carrying on "the winning tradition and legacy of excellence of Kentucky basketball."

Others throughout college basketball and Kentucky also praised Hall on Saturday.

More tributes at Tennessee-Kentucky game

No. 18 Kentucky honored Hall before its game against No. 22 Tennessee at Rupp Arena.

The Wildcats also came out in a 1-3-1 zone — a defense that Hall loved but Calipari's team doesn't play — on their first possession. Calipari was also coaching with a rolled-up program in his hand, another Hall trademark.

Unfortunately for UK fans, the Vols scored on the possession. But the Wildcats quickly took control. They scored 52 first-half points against the Vols — who allowed only 60.7 points per game entering the game — and built a 52-38 lead at halftime. Kentucky went on to win the game 107-79 behind TyTy Washington Jr.'s career-high 28 points.

Legendary Kentucky coach Joe B Hall, right, with Kentucky alumnae Ashley Judd in 2013. (Jonathan Palmer/Lexington Herald-Leader/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Legendary Kentucky coach Joe B Hall, right, with Kentucky alumnae Ashley Judd in 2013. (Jonathan Palmer/Lexington Herald-Leader/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
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