Tom Boerwinkle

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Tom Boerwinkle
Tom Boerwinkle 1969.JPG
Boerwinkle in 1969
Personal information
Born(1945-08-23)August 23, 1945
Cleveland, Ohio
DiedMarch 26, 2013(2013-03-26) (aged 67)
Willowbrook, Illinois
Listed height7 ft 0 in (2.13 m)
Listed weight265 lb (120 kg)
Career information
High school Millersburg Military Institute
(Millersburg, Kentucky)
College Tennessee (1965–1968)
NBA draft 1968 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4th overall
Selected by the Chicago Bulls
Playing career1968–1978
Position Center
Career history
19681978 Chicago Bulls
Career statistics
Points 4,596 (7.2 ppg)
Rebounds 5,745 (9.0 rpg)
Assists 2,007 (3.2 apg)
Stats at

Thomas F. Boerwinkle (August 23, 1945 – March 26, 2013) was an American National Basketball Association center who spent his entire career with the Chicago Bulls.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a men's professional basketball league in North America, composed of 30 teams. It is one of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada, and is widely considered to be the premier men's professional basketball league in the world.

Chicago Bulls American professional basketball team from Chicago, Illinois

The Chicago Bulls are an American professional basketball team based in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Central Division. The team was founded on January 16, 1966. The team plays its home games at the United Center, an arena shared with the Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League (NHL).


Early life

Tom Boerwinkle was born in Independence, Ohio, one of three children of John and Katherine Boerwinkle. [1] John Boerwinkle, an engineer for an oil refinery, [2] was a native of Cleveland and the son of Dutch immigrants who had come to the United States in 1890. [3]

Independence, Ohio City in Ohio, United States

Independence is a city in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States. It is a suburb of Cleveland. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 7,133.

Dutch people or the Dutch are a Germanic ethnic group and nation native to the Netherlands. They share a common culture and speak the Dutch language. Dutch people and their descendants are found in migrant communities worldwide, notably in Aruba, Suriname, Guyana, Curaçao, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, and the United States. The Low Countries were situated around the border of France and the Holy Roman Empire, forming a part of their respective peripheries, and the various territories of which they consisted had become virtually autonomous by the 13th century. Under the Habsburgs, the Netherlands were organised into a single administrative unit, and in the 16th and 17th centuries the Northern Netherlands gained independence from Spain as the Dutch Republic. The high degree of urbanization characteristic of Dutch society was attained at a relatively early date. During the Republic the first series of large-scale Dutch migrations outside of Europe took place.

He attended high school at Millersburg Military Institute, a prep school in Millersburg, Kentucky now known as Forest Hill Military Academy. [4]

Millersburg Military Institute Military boarding school in Millersburg, Kentucky, United States

Millersburg Military Institute (MMI) was a military boarding school founded in 1893 in Millersburg, Kentucky, about 30 miles (48 km) northeast of Lexington, Kentucky.

Millersburg, Kentucky City in Kentucky, United States

Millersburg is a home rule-class city in Bourbon County, Kentucky, in the United States. The population was 792 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Lexington–Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area.

College career

Boerwinkle played for the University of Tennessee and helped the team win the 1967 Southeastern Conference championship. The next year, he was named a Helms Foundation first-team all-American. [5]

Tennessee Volunteers basketball mens basketball team of the University of Tennessee

The Tennessee Volunteers men's basketball team is the collegiate men's basketball program for the University of Tennessee–Knoxville. The Volunteers compete in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

In his junior and senior season, he averaged a double-double each season—10.2 points and 12.2 rebounds his junior season and 11.3 points and 15.2 rebounds his senior season. [6]

Pro career

Boerwinkle was drafted as the fourth pick of the 1968 NBA Draft and played with the Bulls until 1978. Although largely unappreciated during his playing days, Boerwinkle was a very efficient player, using his brawny seven-foot frame to grab rebounds and set picks while teammates like Jerry Sloan, Chet Walker and Bob Love did most of the scoring.

Jerry Sloan American basketball player and coach

Gerald Eugene Sloan is an American former National Basketball Association player and head coach, and a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame. Former NBA commissioner David Stern called Sloan "one of the greatest and most respected coaches in NBA history". Sloan had a career regular-season win–loss record of 1,221–803, placing him third all-time in NBA wins at the time he retired. Sloan was only the fifth coach in NBA history to reach 1,000 victories and is one of two coaches in NBA history to record 1,000 wins with one club. He also coached for one team longer than anyone in NBA history. The 2009–10 season was his 22nd season as coach of the Jazz. Sloan coached the Jazz to 15 consecutive playoff appearances from 1989 to 2003. Although he never won a Coach of the Year award, he is one of only four coaches in NBA history with 15-plus consecutive seasons with a winning record. He led Utah to the NBA Finals in 1997 and 1998, but lost to the Chicago Bulls both times.

Chet Walker American basketball player

Chester Walker is an American former professional basketball player.

Bob Love American basketball player

Robert Earl "Butterbean" Love is an American retired professional basketball player who spent the prime of his career with the National Basketball Association's Chicago Bulls. A versatile forward who could shoot with either his left or right hand, Love now works as the Bulls' Director of Community Affairs.

In addition, he contributed with his passing skills, averaging 3.2 assists per game during his career. On January 8, 1970, Boerwinkle set a Bulls record by grabbing 37 rebounds against the Phoenix Suns. He retired with career totals of 4,596 points, 5,745 rebounds, and 2,007 assists. Boerwinkle also had five triple doubles in his career. [7]

Later life

Boerwinkle later served as a radio color analyst for the Bulls. [8] He was a longtime co-owner of the Olympic Oil Co. in Stickney, Illinois. [9]

Boerwinkle died on March 26, 2013 in Willowbrook, Illinois after struggling with myelodysplastic syndrome, a form of leukemia. [10]

Upon his death, longtime Bulls teammate Bob Love said, "He was a great teammate with a heart of gold. And I always tell people: Half of my baskets came from him. He's one of the best-passing big men of all-time." Hall of Fame center and Bulls teammate Artis Gilmore said, "He understood his role extremely well. He had a very big body and he absorbed a lot of space. With those behind-the-back and over-the-head passes, he was very good. He understood the game and he played intelligent basketball." [11]

He was survived by his wife of 41 years, [1] Linda, son Jeff and daughter Gretchen. [11]


  1. 1 2 "Thomas F. Boerwinkle's Obituary on Chicago Tribune". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  4. "Tom Boerwinkle Past Stats, Playoff Stats, Statistics, History, and Awards". Archived from the original on March 5, 2016. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  5. Yardley, William (March 28, 2013), "Tom Boerwinkle, Who Had Night to Remember as a Rebounder, Dies at 67", The New York Times
  6. Mattingly, Tom (March 28, 2013). ""One Last Hurrah"". Tom Mattingly's Vol Historian. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  7. Tom Boerwinkle: My Most MemoraBull Game
  8. Chicago Bulls media guide. Retrieved on July 7, 2008.
  9. Logan, Bob (March 8, 1985). "Old Bulls Coming Back For Another Shot". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  10. "Former Bulls standout Boerwinkle dies at 67". ESPN. March 27, 2013. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  11. 1 2 Mitchell, Fred (March 27, 2013). "Former Chicago Bulls center Tom Boerwinkle dies at 67". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 15, 2016.

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