25 Leroy Edwards

Leroy Edwards
Hometown (Last School)
Indianapolis, IN (Arsenal Tech)
April 11, 1914

Left for Professional Basketball after Sophomore Season for Industrial League in Indiana

Obituary – Leroy Edwards, All-American Basketball Star, Dies at 57, Indianapolis Star (August 26, 1971)

Leroy (Cowboy) Edwards, former Arsenal Technical High School basketball star, who went on to become an All-American at the University of Kentucky and a six-time all-league center in the professional ranks, died yesterday while mowing his lawn.

Mr. Edwards, 57, 7301 Westchester Drive, Lawrence, collapsed about 7:30 p.m. on top of his power mower. It is believed he suffered a heart attack.

His widow, Audrey, neighbors, and passerby administered mouth-to-mouth resuscitation while awaiting an ambulance. He was dead on arrival at Community Hospital.

Mr. Edwards was one of six players elected last Aug. 13 to the Helms Foundation Basketball Hall of Fame at Los Angeles, Calif.

He was top scorer at Tech for three years and led the team in his junior year (1931-32) to the Final 8 of the Indiana State Tournament with his favorite right-handed hook-shot. He also was the top scorer of the North Central Conference of which Tech at the time was a members.

Duing his freshman year at Kentucky (1933-34) he scored just under 400 points and was termed a “sensation.” The following year he was an All-American as the Wildcats shared the Southeastern Conference championship with Louisiana State University.

Mr. Edwards scored 343 points that year, his high game being 34 against Creighton University. In one game against the University of Chicago he tallied 26 points to the entire Maroons’ 16.

No opposing center outscored him during the season.

Last night Adolph Rupp, the Kenucky coach then as now, said: “Cowboy was a wonderful athlete, contributed a great deal to basketball and he wasn’t necessarily a ‘big boy’ either.” (Edwards was 6 feet 4 inches and weighted around 200 pounds). “We at the university hate to hear of his death. He was strong in everything, strong in basketball and strong in life as a man.”

Mr. Edwards passed up his junior year to join the Oshkosh (Wis.) All Stars in the National Professional Basketball League, a forerunner of the National Basketball Association.

He played for the team from 1936 through 1942 and was all-league center from 1938-42. He led the NPBL in scoring in 1938, 1939 and 1940. He also owned an Oshkosh tavern during most of his time with the team.

Since 1953, Mr. Edwards has been employed as a transmission assembler at the Indianapolis Chrysler Corporation plant.

Services are pending at the Grinsteiner Funeral Home.

Survivors, in addition to the widow, include two daughters, Mrs. Patty Stevenson of Shreveport, La., and Miss Jodie Edwards of Oshkosh; three sons, Leroy Edwards Jr. of Shreveport; Genie Edwards of Chicago, Ill., and Danny Edwards of Muncie, and his mother, Mrs. Millie Edwards of Indianapolis.

Note that the following website goes into greater detail concerning Edwards’ life and basketball career.