Aleksandar Nikolić

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Aleksandar Nikolić
Александар Николић
Personal information
Born (1924-10-28)October 28, 1924
Sarajevo, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes
Died March 12, 2000(2000-03-12) (aged 75)
Belgrade, FR Yugoslavia
Nationality Yugoslav
Listed height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Career information
Playing career 1945–1951
Position Small forward
Coaching career 1951–1985
Career history
As player:
1945 Yugoslav Army
1946–1947 Partizan
1947–1949 Crvena zvezda
1949–1950 Železničar Čačak
1950–1951 BSK Beograd
As coach:
1951–1955 Yugoslavia
1959–1961 Partizan
1962–1963 OKK Beograd
1965–1967 Petrarca Padova
1967–1968 OKK Beograd
1969–1973 Varese
1973–1974 Crvena zvezda
1974–1976 Fortitudo Bologna
1977–1978 Yugoslavia
1978–1980 Borac Čačak
1981–1982 Virtus Bologna
1982–1983 Reyer Venezia
1983–1984 Victoria Libertas
1984–1985 Udinese
Career highlights and awards

As player:

As head coach:

Basketball Hall of Fame as coach
FIBA Hall of Fame as coach

Aleksandar Nikolić, commonly known as Aca Nikolić (Serbian Cyrillic: Александар "Аца" Николић; 28 October 1924 – 12 March 2000) was a Yugoslav and Serbian professional basketball player and coach. He was also a professor, at the University of Belgrade's Faculty of Sport and Physical Education.[1] He is often referred to as, The Father of Yugoslav Basketball.[1]

The future basketball coaches taught by Nikolić include Božidar Maljković, Dušan Ivković, Bogdan Tanjević, Željko Obradović, etc. Nikolić was nicknamed, "The Professor", "Iron Sergeant", and, "The father of Yugoslav basketball". Nikolić was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, as a coach, in 1998, and into the FIBA Hall of Fame, in 2007. In 2008, he was named one of the 50 Greatest EuroLeague Contributors.

Early life[edit]

Though his parents lived in Brčko, Nikolić was born in Sarajevo, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, due to his pregnant mother, Krista, suddenly going into labour, while visiting her sister in Sarajevo.[2] Young Aleksandar enjoyed a privileged upbringing, courtesy of his wealthy father, Đorđe Nikolić, who had him at age 62.[3] After spending the first few years of his life in Brčko, Nikolić, still an infant, got brought to the capital Belgrade, where his parents moved to, and where he ended up growing up.

Nikolić attended Kralj Aleksandar gymnasium at the Belgrade neighourhood of Banovo Brdo.[2] He then studied medicine and law at the University of Belgrade, graduating in 1946.

Playing career[edit]

Club playing career[edit]

Nikolić always had a real passion for basketball. As a club player, he competed for Partizan (1945–1947), Crvena Zvezda (1947–1949), Železničar Čačak (1949–1950), and BSK Beograd (1950–1951). He won the Yugoslav League championships in 1947, 1948, and 1949, with Crvena Zvezda.

National team playing career[edit]

Nikolić was also a member of the senior Yugoslav national basketball team, during the late 1940s, playing in 10 games.

Coaching career[edit]

Club coaching career[edit]

After his playing career was over, Nikolić became involved with coaching, both with Serbia-based clubs, and those in Italy, notably Ignis Varese.

National team coaching career[edit]

Nikolić was also the head coach of the senior Yugoslav national squad, between 1951 and 1965, and later between 1977 and 1978. During this time, he coached two future Hall of Fame members, in Borislav Stanković and Krešimir Ćosić. Under his leadership, Yugoslavia won the gold medals at the 1978 FIBA World Championship and the 1977 EuroBasket; silver medals at the 1963 FIBA World Championship, 1961 EuroBasket, and 1965 EuroBasket, and a bronze medal at the 1963 EuroBasket.


Nikolić died on 12 March 2000, in Belgrade. He is buried in the Alley of the Greats, in Novo Groblje. After his death, Aleksandar Nikolić Hall was named after him, in his honor.

In popular culture[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "15 godina od smrti Profesora" [15 Years since Professor Died]. B92. 12 March 2015. Retrieved 12 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Spasojević, Nina (12 March 2018). "Ekskluzivno: Nepoznati detalji o profesoru Aci Nikoliću". Koš magazin. Retrieved 29 April 2018. 
  3. ^ Život je sjajna zajebancija;Vreme, 28 June 2012.
  4. ^ Full Cast & Crew of We Will Be the World Champions.

External links[edit]