Chip Conner has passed away

Doubt too many here remember Chip. He was a teammate of mine back in the early 60’s. He was the best player on the team and received All-ACC recognition. He was from Clover, Virginia (yes, there is such a place), grew up on a farm and had the strong body of a guy who worked in the fields. He was a wonderful teammate and truly wonderful human being. If you ever run into someone who knew him, they will say the same thing.

He had been failing mentally with Alzheimer’s over the last years and I guess it just took the whole thing. He will be missed.


I’m so sorry about the loss of your friend and team mate. F Alzheimer’s, it got my Dad as well.


Oh man. Sorry to hear this Jay. Enjoy the memories of the real ones like your guy Chip.


Chip Conner was also an assistant coach at Virginia under Bill Gibson, if I am not mistaken.


Looked up Chips stats. Dude was not afraid to shoot and was a rebounding machine at 6-3. Thanks for sharing man



Yes, and left with him to go to South Florida. I was at grad school in late 60’s when basketball first got big under Gibson. I remember sitting on the floor in the halls of UHall all night waiting in line for the ticket office to open to get a couple. I was so naive in those days. All I had to do was call Chip and he would have found them for me. Never occurred to me.


I remember an interview with Conner after he had left for South Florida. He was commenting on the difference between coaching there, and coaching at Virginia. In one of their first games there, during a time-out, he was telling a player, “Intensify your overplay! Intensify your overplay!” Gibson pushed him out of the way are reworded the instructions in a manner both more crude and somewhat profane. Conner was quoted as saying it was a revelation for him. Or, words to that effect.


I do remember Chip, not as a person, but as a player. Very solid guard and, yes, our best player. He had a game similar to Dfresh, if I recall correctly. Sorry to hear of his passing.



I grew up with Chip’s sons in Richmond before they moved to Greensboro. He was an incredible representative and fan of UVA (in spite of sending his sons to Chapel Hill). He told great stories of playing in Mem Gym and playing one of Adolph Rupp’s legendary UK teams. I’m glad he’s being remembered.


So cool

1 Like

Below is an article written by Mike Barber about Chip. While many of you know little about him, you may find the article interesting because there are some interesting tidbits about our hero Barry Parkhill.

Oh, also there is a mention of me.

I am just pasting since it was pasted to me and the article requires a subscription:
Mike Barber

CHARLOTTESVILLE – When people point to the 1971-72 college basketball season as the one that launched Virginia’s program toward the success it would find later in the decade, invariably, they bring up star player Barry Parkhill, who led the team to 21 wins that year.

But Parkhill said that, if not for a lesser-known name, he might never have gotten to UVa from western Pennsylvania.

Parkhill had been invited to work as a counselor at a basketball camp in Gettysburg, one that Virginia head basketball coach Bill Gibson helped run. Gibson was traveling overseas but his lead assistant, Chip Conner, worked the camp and noticed Parkhill during the games the counselors would play.

“The last game I lit it up. I couldn’t do anything wrong,” Parkhill said Tuesday. “The next day, my dad comes to pick me up and Coach Conner comes over and asks me to visit Virginia. I committed to Virginia early on and it was the best decision I ever made, all thanks to Coach Conner.”

Conner, a former high school and Virginia basketball star who later served as an assistant coach for the Cavaliers, died Friday at 81, after a short battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Conner, who starred at Halifax County High School and was named Virginia’s Mr. Basketball in 1960, played at UVa from 1960-64, scoring 1,157 career points. A first-team All-ACC selection as a senior, Conner ranked sixth all-time in scoring in program history at the time of his graduation.

Conner taught and coached at the now-defunct Lane High School in Charlottesville for two years after his playing career ended, then returned to his alma mater as an assistant coach for Gibson.

Still a young man at that point, Conner enjoyed competing with the UVa players. Parkhill, who wore number 40 at Virginia because it was Conner’s number as a Cavalier, recalled playing games of horse and one-on-one with Conner, while Jim Hobgood, the second-leading scorer on the 1971-72 team, said Conner would challenge the team away from the court, as well.

Hobgood and teammates Chip Miller and Scott McCandlish devised a variation of softball played with three-man teams.

“We designed the rules to suit our talents,” Hobgood said. “We were rather obnoxious talking about our skill level. Coach Conner decided he was going to put a team together to take us one.”

For his team, Conner recruited a former Virginia baseball player for the lineup.

Hobgood said Conner also was an invaluable resource helping his players navigate the university.

“Coach Conner was the one guy on the staff who actually had attended Virginia,” Hobgood said. “He sort of became our inhouse academic advisor. If you had a question about course registration or things like that, he was sort of our go-to guy.”

In 1974, Conner left Virginia, following Gibson to South Florida. After Gibson’s sudden death prior to the 1975-76 season, Conner took over as the program’s head coach and led the Bulls for five years.

Conner’s first season saw USF go 19-8, but he would not post another winning record there. In all, he went 59-62 with the Bulls before being let go midway through the 1979-80 campaign.

In 1980, Conner and his family moved to the Richmond area where he began a career in real estate. All the while, he stayed in touch with his former players, including Parkhill, and would return to UVa for basketball reunions.

“He was one of my favorite human beings, from the time I was in high school to the time he passed away on Friday,” Parkhill said. “I sort of worshipped the ground he walked on. He was just one of those guys you couldn’t help but like.”

Nice article. Maybe you missed the mention of me. Well, I was the recruited Virginia baseball player. I was in grad school and Chip asked me to play in this softball game. Wasn’t until reading this article that I realized this game was such a big deal. Probably should have because the first few times I ran into Jim Hobgood at the basketball reunions, he would address me as the “ringer”. I honestly didn’t know what he was referring to at first. Hell, they were probably all as good as me. Don’t remember who won the game, but I’ll bet they did for a long time.

Those were good times


Incredible and I love this shit