Vincent Jerome Askew (born February 28, 1966, in Memphis, Tennessee) is a retired American professional Basketball player who was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers in the second round (39th overall) of the 1987 NBA Draft. A 6'5" guard-forward from Memphis State University, Askew played in nine NBA seasons for eight different teams.
Askew was a Frayser High graduate before enrolling at Memphis State University. He was a low key player who led the 1984-85 squad, which unofficially got to the Final Four, in minutes played. Askew was one of the more complete players on the team, capable of banging down low one possession and running the point the next.
After the Final Four season, Askew found himself in the midst of a debate on NCAA regulations when he briefly considered transferring to Kansas.
In October 1986, Vincent Askew was involved in a possible transfer to the University of Kansas for the purpose of playing basketball. He did not transfer, and re-enrolled at Memphis State University in the fall of 1986. While Askew was visiting the Jayhawks, then-coach Larry Brown provided Askew with a plane ticket to fly back to Memphis to see his dying grandmother. Regardless of motivation, the plane ticket was a violation in the eyes of the NCAA and Kansas was served with several NCAA sanctions because of their recruitment of Askew, mainly involving “improper recruiting inducements totaling at least $1,244 to the above-mentioned young man.”
NBA scouts saw in Askew the kind of versatile, durable talent that would keep him in the NBA for years. Askew left after three seasons with the Tigers, a decision many scouts met with raised eyebrows.
Askew was picked by the Philadelphia 76ers in the second round (39th overall) of the 1987 NBA Draft. He was waived after 14 games, then spent three weeks with the Washington Bullets, and then drifted into the Continental Basketball Association.
He was brought back to the NBA by the Golden State Warriors to finish the 1992 season, then he went to the Sacramento Kings for part of a season, then drifted to the Seattle SuperSonics. For four years in Seattle, he contributed about six points, four rebounds, and two assists per game. Then, he was traded to the New Jersey Nets, played one game there, then was traded to the Indiana Pacers. Larry Brown (basketball), then of the Pacers, described his trade for Askew as "I don't know of too many guys in the league who are better defenders than him, and not everybody is as unselfish. He doesn't worry about minutes, doesn't worry about shots, he just worries about winning."
He also had stints with the Denver Nuggets and the Portland Trail Blazers, where he was waived for a final time in 1997-1998 season.
Askew was described as a 6-foot-6 do-everything team player who played in the post and the perimeter and was a steady defensive stopper who built a reliable jumper late in his career. The most he has ever scored in an NBA game is 21 points. In his NBA career, Askew played in 467 games and scored a total of 3,313 points. He averaged 7.1 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2.2 assists in 20 minutes per game.
Professional career outside the NBAEdit
Askew is the only player to be named Most Valuable Player in two straight years (1990 and 1991) in the Continental Basketball Association. He also had a stint in the World Basketball League.
Askew also played in Italy for Serie A (basketball) team Arimo Bologna (1989) and Serie A2 teams Emmezeta Udine (1990-1991) and Sidis Reggio Emilia (1992).
After the NBA, Askew had some difficulties establishing himself. European basketball records indicate that at least three times he signed with various teams but refused to play with them, ending in August 2001 when he signed a contract with Roseto but did not come to Italy. Askew, according to an undated Euroleague scouting report, “is an NBA veteran that has finally, according to many, reached maturity. Vincent still has a lot of basketball left in him and wants to show the basketball people in Europe that he is indeed a reliable person.”
Upon his release from Portland in 1998, Askew returned to his hometown of Memphis, completed a degree in marketing and did some scouting for Memphis coach John Calipari, which piqued his interest in coaching.
He confided in George Karl, his long-time mentor from his Sonics days, and was told to go overseas. Askew went to Europe where he coached in an Italian league for three years.
Askew took the head coaching job at Elliston Baptist Academy in Memphis but was embattled to leave the job. Allegations that he had used ineligible players had landed the school in hot water with the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association, potentially costing them a chance to play in the postseason, and Askew's players were not pleased with his abrasive coaching methods.
In 2004, Askew accepted the head coaching position at Rossville Christian Academy. Askew again stirred some controversy by recruiting players, which is a clear Mississippi Private School Association (MPSA) violation, but Askew did lead the RCA Rebels to the Class A State Championship.
In 2005, he contacted the ABA expansion team Tacoma Navigators' owner Michael Tuckman. Askew got a chance to hone his raw coaching skills, while the Navigators, which plays its home games at Mount Tahoma High School, marketed its coach as a former Sonic.
On August 14, 2008 at 8:13 am US/Eastern, Vincent Askew was accused of having sex with a 16-year-old girl at a Ramada Inn in the 7600 Block of Kendall Drive. Askew was employed by Gulliver Preparatory School in Miami, Florida in 2007. Askew was a candidate to be a basketball coach at Gulliver, however he was just a student supervisor at the time of the incident. Police said Askew told the girl he was recruiting players for the girl's basketball team.
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