Bob Brannum

Bob Brannum

Robert Warren Brannum (May 28, 1925–February 5, 2005) was an American basketball player.

A 6'5" center from Winfield, Kansas, Brannum attended the University of Kentucky and Michigan State University before playing professional basketball.

Brannum spent his first three professional seasons with the Sheboygan Red Skins, whose pro roots dated from 1938, the second season of the National Basketball League. Brannum started all three seasons, during which Sheboygan played in three leagues: the NBL (1948-49), NBA (1949-50) and National Professional Basketball League (1950-51). He was one of the all-time great Redskins players, known for his hard-nosed play, rebounding prowess and scoring ability. In his final season with Sheboygan, when the Redskins finished with the NPBL's best record, Brannum was selected first-team center after having the league's high scoring average (19.0 points per game). His 45-point barrage against the Kansas City Hi-Spots on Dec. 28, 1950, was a franchise record, topping the 44 points Bobby Cook scored against the NBA's Denver Nuggets the previous January.

He spent the next four seasons with the Boston Celtics, with whom he earned a reputation as a hard-nosed, pugnacious player. He often served as an unofficial "bodyguard" for smaller players on the team, especially point guard Bob Cousy. Cousy later remarked in an interview, "It was a great luxury to have Bob on the team, and to have him playing the role of protector. It definitely made my job a lot easier." [ [ Interview with Bob Cousy] . Retrieved 4 August 2007.]

Brannum retired as a player in 1955. He later coached basketball at Norwich University, Kenyon College and Brandeis University, where he won a school-record 204 games. He died of pancreatic cancer in 2005. [ [ Obituary] . Retrieved 4 August 2007.]


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