OXFORD, Ohio – Longtime Miami (Ohio) basketball coach Charlie Coles, the school’s all-time leader in victories, died Friday at his Oxford, Ohio, home, the school said. He was 71.
No cause of death was reported immediately, but Coles had a history of heart issues.
The two-time Mid-American Conference coach of the year had 263 victories at Miami. He also was the conference’s all-time leader. He had a career record of 355-308 in 22 seasons at Miami and Central Michigan.
Coles retired in March 2012, following the Redhawks’ first-round loss at Toledo in the first round of the conference tournament. He coached Miami for 16 seasons, with a record of 263-224.
Coles’ Miami team made a longshot run into the NCAA tournament’s round of 16 in 1999, led by future NBA forward Wally Szczerbiak. Miami lost to Kentucky.
Coles had heart problems for years, missing the end of the 2008-09 season because of health problems. He had four operations in the next few months, one to reshape his heart. He recovered and returned to coaching, getting a contract extension.
The school hired John Cooper from Tennessee State last year to succeed him.
He is survived by his wife Delores, son Chris and daughter Mary Bennett, and four grandchildren, the school said.