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Image 11 of Basketball, 1971

Part of University of Kentucky Basketball Media Guides (Men)

was named acting athletic director in September 1968 and permanent AD three months later. After assuming full time duties as AD, the long time assistant to Coach Adolph Rupp relinquished his freshman coaching duties to Joe Hall and silently began giving up other coaching duties until season's end. Basketball's loss was the University's gain over-all as Lancaster quickly moved to accept the position of leadership which had been relegated in an "acting" capacity first to Robert L. Johnson and then to Lancaster since the death of Bernie A. Shively Dec. 10, 1967. The Rupp-Lancaster association, begun after the latter was discharged from the Navy as a lieutenant (s.g.) in 1946, has been one of mutual respect and harmony. Rupp, who always prides himself as one who "surrounds myself with the best people for the job at hand," made Lancaster a full assistant in 1948. During the two previous years, the youthful Navy veteran had busied himself by serving as part-time assistant while carrying on teaching duties and studying for a master's degree. The dual duties, plus extra studies, were second nature to Lancaster, who had served as assistant football and basketball coach at Georgetown College (1932-33) and Paris High School (1933-34), head basketball coach at Bagdad High School (1934-36) and principal and coach at Gleneyrie High School (1936-42) and physical education instructor at UK in 1942. He was to continue that trend of carrying extra loads, serving as UK's baseball coach for 17 seasons prior to relinquishing the post following the 1965 campaign and teaching physical education for 18 years. Basketball was his forte, however, and in addition to coaching Rupp's freshman teams, he was always at the side of the "baron" during the heat of battle. In his own right, Lancaster has traveled extensively and received a signal honor when he was invited to prepare the Greek National Basketball Team for the 1968 Olympics. A six-week tour in Athens was cancelled when Lancaster was asked to stay home and serve as acting athletics chief of staff. Traveled To Greece In 1951 Lancaster had traveled to Greece in the summer of 1951 on a special athletic assignment for the U.S. State Department. The mission called for him to act as an advisor to Greek Basketball Federation officials in Olympic procedures and other matters. He also conducted numerous clinics and coaching schools and gave public lectures on the cage sport. During the summer of 1962, he helped Coach Rupp conduct clinics for Army personnel in the Far East Theater and worked with Rupp on the team's Middle East Tour in 1966 and a clinic in Germany in the summer of 1967. It is ironic that Lancaster gained greatest fame in basketball, since he always considered himself a better football player. He was an all-conference halfback for three straight years and captain during his last two seasons at Georgetown College and also played semi-pro ball in Louisville and Cincinnati. His success on the basketball court was equally great, however, as he earned three all-conference nominations and two team captaincies. As a coach, he guided Kentucky yearlings to 204 victories, against only 57 losses, against formidable competition that included the more elite junior college clubs and top-notch service teams. He posted respectable records as a baseball coach and gave the school its winningest seasons in history by registering identical 18-8 marks in 1959-1960. A native of Paris, Ky., Lancaster attended Paris High School, where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball under Coach Blanton Collier. At Georgetown College, he was president of Kappa Alpha Social Fraternity and the Student Body during his senior year. He is one of four persons named honorary life members by the organization of sports letter winners at the University. He was married to the late Mrs. Katherine Louise Wright of Christiansburg. A daughter, Mrs. Dan Spain Jr. and two grandchildren, Kevin, 7, and Dana, 5, live in Rockville, Md. His father, U. F. Lancaster, resides at Richmond, Ky. 9

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