Former Iowa basketball recruit James Speed dies


September 15th, 2011 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Former Iowa basketball recruit James Speed, whose career was cut short when he went blind, has died of complications from liver cancer. The University of Iowa says Speed died Wednesday in Las Vegas, where he lived since the mid-1970s. He was 61. Speed was a Hawkeye recruit in 1970, when he lost his sight in both eyes due to a sinus infection before he played a game for Iowa. Speed, who grew up in Shreveport, La., was a 6-7 forward who played junior college basketball in El Centro, Calif. After losing his sight, Speed worked as a basketball coach and most recently in real estate.