Kokomo basketball legend Rayl dies at 77

IN ACTION: Kokomo's Jimmy Rayl is shown in action with the Indiana Pacers in this undated photo.

Kokomo High School basketball legend Jimmy Rayl died Sunday. He was 77.

“The Splendid Splinter” was Indiana’s Mr. Basketball in 1959 after scoring more than 29 points per game in his senior campaign. He led Kokomo to the state championship game and earned the Trester Mental Attitude Award. A great long-range shooter, he finished his high school career with 1,632 points.

At Indiana University, he was a two-time All-American. He established an IU and then-Big Ten record when he scored 56 points in a game against Minnesota in 1962 and he matched that feat in a game against Michigan State in 1963.

He finished his college career with 1,401 career points over three seasons.

“Jimmy Rayl was one of the greatest players in the history of IU basketball and an icon in the state of Indiana” IU athletic director Fred Glass said in a story on IU’s website. “All of us with IU Athletics mourn his passing and offer deepest sympathies to his family and friends.”

Rayl played two seasons with the Indiana Pacers in the ABA and had a high game of 32 points.

• The Tribune will have more on Rayl this week.

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