Jan. 4, 2013
Former Illinois coach Lee
Eilbracht passes away
Lee Eilbracht, the winningest coach in Illinois
baseball history, passed away on Jan. 2 at the age of 88.
The Fighting Illini posted 515 victories in 27
seasons under Eilbracht from 1952-78. Eilbracht led Illinois to
four Big Ten titles and three NCAA District Playoff appearances.
A native of St. Louis, Mo., Eilbracht was a
three-time letterman at Illinois (1943, 46-47). He was team MVP
in his final two years and was an All-American in 1947.
Eilbracht batted .484 in 1946, the top mark in the Big Ten.
Following a career in professional baseball as a player and
manager in the Chicago Cubs’ organization, Eilbracht was named
head coach at Illinois in 1952.
In 1964, Eilbracht was an Olympic coach for the
United States baseball team in Japan. He was the first executive
director for the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Eilbracht retired following the 1978 season and was an analyst
on Illinois baseball broadcasts starting in the 1990s.
Eilbracht is survived by five children and