Former Abilene Christian coach Tate dies at 74

BY foxsports • February 13, 2010

Former Abilene Christian basketball coach Willard Tate has died after a long illness. He was 74.

The school said Saturday that Tate died the previous day at his home.

Tate coached the Wildcats from 1973-80. His teams went 119-79 in those seven seasons, giving him the most wins and the third-best winning percentage of any coach in school history.

Tate was the Lone Star Conference coach of the year in 1979-80, going 27-5 and making it to the second round of the NAIA national tournament. He went into the school's hall of fame in 1996.

Before coming to Abilene Christian, Tate was at Alabama Christian, now called Faulkner University, where he started the athletic program.

Tate is survived by a wife and two children.

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