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Donald ‘Cisco’ Ross, former Armstrong Excessive, VCU star, dies | Richmond Free Press

ByEditorialTeam

Oct 6, 2022

Donald “Cisco” Ross Jr., a former Armstrong Excessive and VCU basketball standout, died Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022. He was 74.

Mr. Ross performed at Armstrong beneath Max E. Robinson and at VCU beneath coaches Ed Allen and Benny Dees.

He was extraordinarily fashionable round city. At any bus cease, barber store, division retailer or health club, everybody knew “Cisco” even when they weren’t certain of his full identify.

Whereas an Armstrong Wildcat, Ross helped lead his workforce to the finals of the Nationwide Negro Event in Chattanooga, Tenn.

From Armstrong, he enrolled at Cleveland State the place he performed his freshman season beneath revered Corridor of Fame Coach John McLendon.

After transferring to VCU (then known as Richmond Skilled Institute), the 6-foot guard scored a still-school document 55 factors in a Rams loss at Previous Dominion in 1968, beneath Coach Allen.

A dynamic ball-handler, he averaged greater than 30 factors in 1967-1968 when the Rams had been enjoying beneath the NAIA umbrella.

Mr. Ross additionally performed the 1969-70 season at VCU beneath Coach Dees, however a again harm restricted his effectiveness.

He was eligible for the 1970-71 season, beneath new Coach Chuck Noe, however stepped down as a result of harm.

As one of many first Black gamers at RPI/VCU, Mr. Ross was additionally concerned in recruiting new gamers. He performed a big position luring Charles “Jabo” Wilkins to VCU.

And within the spring of 1970, Mr. Ross organized a recruiting social gathering on campus that led to the signing of Jesse Darkish, Bernard Harris, Greg McDougald, Dave Edwards, Howie Robinson and Reggie Cain.

Some counsel that weekend signaled the beginning of “large time basketball” at VCU.

“They requested me to throw a celebration, so I threw a celebration they’d always remember,” Mr. Ross informed the Free Press a number of years in the past.

Mr. Ross’ father, the late Donald Sr., was a standout at Virginia Union College the place he earned All-CIAA honors. It was Donald Sr. who first earned the nickname “Cisco” (from the “Cisco Child” TV collection.)

His son, the late Donald III, grew up within the Washington D.C. space and went on to change into one of many all-time greatest 3-point shooters at George Mason College.

Mr. Ross is survived by his spouse, Annie Ross, and sister, Donna Ross.



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