Doug Widtfeldt, Center On USC Men's Basketball's 1979 NCAA Tournament Team, Dies

    Doug Widtfeldt
    April 6, 2015

    Doug Widtfeldt, a center on the 1979 USC men's basketball team that advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and who then was a captain of the 1980 Trojans, died on March 30 in Sacramento, Calif., of a brain aneurysm. He was 57.

    There will be a private memorial service in Folsom, Calif.

    A 6-8 center known for his scrappy, aggressive, hustling play, Widtfeldt was inserted into the starting lineup for USC's final 8 games of 1979 when leading scorer and rebounder Cliff Robinson was lost to a season-ending injury and he helped Troy win 7 of those games, the loss coming to DePaul in the NCAA second round. He averaged 10.3 points (shooting 55.1%) and 6.9 rebounds during that 8-game run. USC went 20-9 that season and finished second in the Pac-10 in Bob Boyd's final year as head coach. Overall in 1979 as a junior, Widtfeldt averaged 5.3 points and 3.8 rebounds while being named USC's Most Improved Player.

    He started as a senior in 1980, averaging 8.0 points and 6.1 rebounds while co-captaining the Trojans under new coach Stan Morrison and earning the team's Most Inspirational Player Award.

    He was an All-CIF player at La Mirada (Calif.) High.

    After USC, he became a legislative policy consultant/analyst, government affairs representative and lobbyist in Sacramento specializing in workers' compensation issues. He served in various capacities for a number of insurance trade associations. He later became an insurance agent.

    He is survived by his son, Ben, his mother, Roxanne, his sisters, Kristen and Karen, and his brother, David.