The Norman Transcript

Sports

May 30, 2014

Sooner great Bobby Jack remembered as fierce competitor

NORMAN — Former Oklahoma basketball and baseball star Bobby Jack died last week at the age of 63 from complications from cardiovascular disease.

A standout for OU in both sports in the early 1970s, Jack earned All-Big Eight honors in both sports and played an instrumental role in helping both programs to postseason appearances after lengthy droughts.

In basketball, Jack blossomed his junior and senior seasons on offense. He was the team’s leading scorer his final two years, averaging 17.3 points per game as a junior and 16.5 as a senior for head coach John MacLeod.

OU’s NIT appearances his sophomore and junior years in 1970 and 1971 were the program’s first postseason showings since 1947.

Jack earned all-conference honors in his final season on the hardwood and finished his career as OU’s third-leading all-time scorer. He now ranks 25th in school history in scoring despite, playing just three seasons. He finished his career with averages of 15.0 points and 5.8 rebounds a contest.

Current OU head men’s basketball coach Lon Kruger played against Jack when he was at Kansas Sate.

“I played against Bobby in both baseball and basketball and he was an outstanding competitor,” Kruger said in a statement. “More importantly, he was a terrific person and a prideful Sooner. He will be greatly missed.”

Jack was a three-time all-conference pick as an infielder (1970-72) and earned All-America honors as a senior when he helped the Sooners to the 1972 College World Series.

He went on to be drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the third round of the 1972 Major League Draft (59th overall selection) and rose to the level of Triple-A in the Braves’ minor league system before deciding to enter the business world.

“Bobby Jack was arguably the greatest two-sport star in OU history,” former OU teammate Joe Simpson and longtime television and radio announcer for the Atlanta Braves said in a statement. “Great leader. Great roommate. Great teammate. Great friend. This is my 40th year in professional baseball and he was one of the best right-handed hitters I ever saw.

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