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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Durrett dies of apparent heart attack news services

WILKINSBURG, Pa. -- Kenny Durrett, a former All-American basketball player at La Salle who played in the NBA for four seasons, died at his home Sunday of an apparent heart attack. He was 52.

Durrett, who averaged 4.0 points for Cincinnati, Kansas-Omaha and Philadelphia from 1971 through 1975 before a nagging knee injury ended his career, was the fourth player chosen in the NBA's entry draft in 1971 by the Cincinnati Royals.

He signed a contract with the Royals that was reportedly worth more than $1 million, with deferred payments until 1991. His pro career ended in 1975 when he failed a tryout with the Philadelphia 76ers.

Durrett returned to La Salle to earn his bachelor's degree and to work as an assistant basketball coach.

Durrett was a dominating 6-foot-7½ forward among Philadelphia's Big 5 -- the city's five major college programs -- and was inducted into the Big 5 Hall of Fame in 1975 with players like Paul Arizin, Tom Gola and Matt Guokas.

Durrett, who averaged 23.7 points in college, was the co-MVP of the Big 5 as a sophomore in 1969 and won the award by himself in 1970 and '71. He also led La Salle to the National Invitation Tournament in 1971.

Durrett is survived by his wife, Stephanie; daughters Beverly and Anita; and a son, Kenneth Jr., his mother, Eulacile King; and stepsons, Jamarow and Christopher Trowrey, all of Wilkinsburg.

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