Sports Outside the Beltway

Founding UCF Basketball Coach Eugene ‘Torchy’ Clark dead at 80

He took the University of Central Florida to the Division II Final Four in 1978. RIP.

The founding father of UCF basketball, Eugene “Torchy” Clark, died at 80 on Wednesday.

Clark was responsible for starting the men’s basketball program in 1969. He served many additional years in the university’s College of Education.

Clark’s first team in 1969-70 played its first game before the squad even had a nickname. He would go on to extend his career through the 1983 season, compiling a record of 274-89 (.754). Clark guided UCF to the Division II Final Four in 1978.

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