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IU Basketball Legend Jimmy Rayl Passes Away

An all-time great in the history of the Indiana University men’s basketball program passed away on Sunday.

Among several notable accomplishments, the legendary Jimmy Rayl holds a Hoosier record that has stood for more than 55 years — and he did it twice.  Rayl is perhaps best known for his two 56-point games during the 1962 and 1963 seasons.

The IU Hall of Fame inductee was an All-American and first team All-Big Ten selction.

Jimmy Rayl was 77.

Here is the full release from the school:

IU Basketball Mourns The Loss of Jimmy Rayl

Former two-time Indiana University All-American Jimmy Rayl, 77, passed away on Sunday.  Rayl played for the Hoosiers from 1960 to 1963 and earned All-American honors and first-team All-Big Ten accolades in 1962-63. He was named team MVP in 1962 and was inducted into the IU Athletics Hall of Fame in 1991.

“Jimmy Rayl was one of the greatest players in the history of IU basketball and an icon in the state of Indiana” said IU Vice President and Director of Athletics Fred Glass.  “All of us with IU Athletics mourn his passing and offer deepest sympathies to his family and friends.”

The Kokomo native twice established an IU and then Big Ten record when he scored 56 points in a game in 1962 against Minnesota and in 1963 against Michigan State.  His efforts rank 3rd all-time in Big Ten history and his 23 field goals in 48 attempts against the Spartans are the second most in league history.

He ranks 23rd on the school’s all-time scoring list with 1,401 points.  After averaging 4.0 points as a sophomore in 1960-61, Rayl went on to average 29.8 in 1961-62 and 25.3 points in 1962-63.   He shot 41.6 percent from the floor and 83.5 percent from the line in 68 games as a Hoosier.

“On behalf of everyone in our program, our thoughts and prayers go out to the Rayl Family,” said IU Coach Archie Miller.  “His accomplishments as a basketball player from this state were profound and set an example for others to aspire to.”

He was a 1959 graduate of Kokomo High School and was named Mr. Basketball following his senior year where he averaged more than 29 points per game.  He earned the Trester Mental Attitude Award after leading Kokomo to the state championship game.

A 1989 inductee into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, he was drafted by the Cincinnati Royals in the 3rd round in 1963.  He played 101 games for the Indiana Pacers in the 1967-68 and 1968-69 seasons and averaged 11.1 points per game.  He averaged 12.0 points his first season and 8.9 the following year.

“Jimmy was a legend all his own,” said IU Athletics Hall of Famer and former Bloomington Herald Times Sports Editor Bob Hammel. “He had a signature jump shot, very high-arced landing in the net with a soft puff. I didn’t see either of his 56-point games at IU but I did see him win a 92-90  high school semistate game against Fort Wayne South and his future IU teammate Tom Bolyard with a 35-foot buzzer shot, classic Jimmy, high and puff.”

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