| Wins against Kentucky - 0 | Losses against Kentucky - 1 |
Alma Mater: McKendree College 
Hometown: Carrier Mills, IL
Date Died: June 20, 1983
Overall Record: 158-161 [12 Seasons]
[Earned Masters Degree from University of Kentucky in 1967]
|11/27/1976||Wisconsin at Kentucky||W||72 - 64||-|
Obituary - UPI (June 22, 1983)
Bill Cofield, a former head basketball coach at the University of Wisconsin, died of cancer in a hospital here Monday night. He was 43 years old. Mr. Cofield became the first black head coach of a major sport in the Big Ten Conference when he was hired by Wisconsin in 1976. In 6 seasons his teams won 61 games and lost 103, and he resigned under pressure in March 1982.
Madison Wis. - Bill Cofield, the first black basketball coach in the Big Ten Conference, died Monday night of cancer at age 43. Cofield became head coach at the University of Wisconsin in 1976. He was 61-103 over six years and had one winning season - 15-14 in 1979-80. Cofield resigned under fire in 1982.
Cofield never had a contending team despite his comments that Wisconsin would be a contender within a few years. He got into trouble almost immediately after he arrived in Madison, saying about players he inherited: "Most should not have been recruited for Carroll College." He also said he "will be either the black Vince Lombardi or the black Dan Devine (both former Green Bay Packer coaches), and I don't want to be the black Dan Devine." He ended up losing several of his players because of either trouble with the law or academic problems.
Cofield, born in Carrier Mills, Ill., coached high school basketball in Cleveland and was an assistant at Kentucky State before becoming head coach at Lincoln, Pa., University from 1966-69. He coached four years at Prairie View A&M and a year at the College of Racine, before he came to Wisconsin, Cofield spent two years as an assistant at Virginia.
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