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George Mikan

Related Biography: Basketball Coach Ray Meyer

Known for his passion for the game and his ability to teach and motivate his players, Ray Meyer served as the head basketball coach of DePaul's Blue Demons from 1942 to 1984. His record of 724 wins and 354 losses included 37 winning seasons, thirteen National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) post-season appearances and eight National Invitational Tournament (NIT) appearances, twelve 20-win seasons, two NCAA Final Four appearances (1943 and 1978), and a NIT title (1945).

Meyer, who played college basketball for the Irish, led his team to a 40-6 record during his junior and senior years. After graduating, Meyer spent two years as a social worker before returning to Notre Dame as an assistant coach. Meyer arrived at DePaul in 1942, the same year that young George Mikan came to the school. Meyer, who had encountered Mikan the previous year during the gangly young man's failed attempt to try out for the Notre Dame team, recognized Mikan's potential. Using drills such as jumping rope and shadow boxing, Meyer helped Mikan improve his coordination and guided him on his way to becoming one of the game's most influential players.

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