LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Ed Beck, a fierce rebounder for Kentucky’s 1958 NCAA championship team nicknamed the “Fiddlin’ Five,” has died. He was 83.
The school said Beck died Wednesday in Sun City, Arizona. A two-year captain for coach Adolph Rupp, Beck grabbed 11.6 boards per game with 5.6 points on the school’s fourth title squad. Beck was named Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year that season.
As a junior, Beck averaged 14.1 rebounds and 9.6 points to earn Associated Press All-SEC second team honors. His career average of 10 rebounds was Kentucky’s third-highest total at the time.
Beck’s leadership in 1958 followed a personal loss with the offseason death of his first wife, Billie, from Hodgkin’s disease. He turned down an offer from the NBA’s New York Knicks after graduation to enter the ministry and served there for over 50 years.