Leavenworth native and former University of Kansas assistant men’s basketball coach Neil Dougherty died Tuesday while on a run in Indianapolis. Dougherty, 50, was working as the director of athlete and coach programs for iHoops, a joint venture between the NCAA and NBA to promote youth basketball, at the time of his death.
He is survived by his wife, Patti, and three children, Megan, Neil and Ryan.
iHoops released this statement on its website:
“It is with great sadness that we share that our colleague Neil Dougherty passed away earlier this week during a run in Indianapolis.
Serving the game he loved, Neil has been a driving force and true visionary in the path of building iHoops from its earliest days.
Neil's commitment to assuring young people experience the joy and satisfaction of the game as he did will empower our focus going forward.
A truly remarkable man, coach, father, grandfather, husband, son, brother, friend and colleague, he will be missed by all and his legacy will impact generations to come.
All other details, including arrangements, are pending.”
Dougherty was a standout for the Pioneer basketball team and went on to play for two years at West Point before transferring to Cameron University in Oklahoma where he earned his degree in 1984.
He held assistant coaching positions at Cameron, Drake, Vanderbilt and South Carolina before joining Roy Williams’ coaching staff at Kansas in 1995. He was the first Kansas native to work as a KU assistant under Williams.
He was a member of the Jayhawk staff until 2002, when he took over as head coach at Texas Christian. He ammassed a 75-106 record as head coach of the Horned Frogs for six seasons.