By Joseph Phillips, Crusader Sports Editor
The Chicago Bulls hired former basketball legend Maurice “Mo” Cheeks to their coaching staff on Monday, November 2 as an assistant coach.
Cheeks was hired by Bulls new head coach Billy Donovan after spending five seasons on his staff with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Born in Chicago, Cheeks attended DuSable High School where he was a standout basketball player. While at West Texas State University from 1974 to 1978 he was an all-Missouri Valley Conference player for three straight seasons. He averaged 16.8 points per game and shot nearly 57 percent for his collegiate career.
The third leading scorer in West Texas State history, Cheeks was selected as the 36th overall pick in the second round of the 1978 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers.
As a point guard Cheeks played 15 years in the NBA, including 11 seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers. He earned four trips to the NBA All-Star Game, and helped the 76ers to three NBA Finals appearances in four seasons.
During the 1983 season, Cheeks won his first NBA championship with a Sixers team that featured stars such as Julius Erving, also known as Dr. J, Moses Malone, and Andrew Toney. He also played alongside NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley.
Well regarded for his team play and defensive skills Cheeks played 15 years and was named to four straight NBA All-Defensive teams from 1983 to 1986.
Cheeks earned a spot on the NBA All-Defensive second team in 1987 and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 2018.
In the past, Cheeks served as head coach for the Portland Trail Blazers, Philadelphia 76ers and Detroit Pistons.