Class of 1971
Towe attended Oak Hill High School in Converse, Indiana. He was the starting point guard on North Carolina State's 1974 NCAA championship team, and also played varsity baseball for NC State, earning All-ACC recognition in basketball and playing on conference championship teams in both sports. (One of his baseball and basketball teammates, Tim Stoddard, would go on to have success as a Major League Baseball pitcher.) In 1975, the 5'7" (1.7 m) Towe received the Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award as the year's best college player under 6 feet tall. Monte Towe and David Thompson are credited with "inventing" the alley-oop. Because dunking was illegal at the time, Towe would throw the ball to Thompson while he was in the air and Thompson would gently drop the ball in the basket. Towe was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the third round of the 1975 ABA Draft and by the Atlanta Hawks in the fourth round of the 1975 NBA Draft. Towe joined Thompson in signing with Denver, for whom he played in 1976 in the final year of the American Basketball Association and in 1977 when Denver joined the NBA. He played in the 1976 ABA All-Star game when the game format was Denver vs. All-Stars.
After his retirement as a player, Towe became an assistant coach under Norm Sloan, first at NC State (1979-80) and then at the University of Florida (1981-89). During the 1990s, he was coach and general manager of two teams in the Global Basketball Association; coach of a professional team in Venezuela (Marinos de Oriente); an assistant coach of the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the Continental Basketball Association under head coach Flip Saunders; coach of two junior college teams; and an assistant coach at the University of North Carolina at Asheville.
In 2000, Towe was named head basketball coach at the University of New Orleans. He compiled a 70-78 record over five seasons. In May 2006, he left UNO to become associate head coach at North Carolina State under new head coach Sidney Lowe.
Towe was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002.
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