Patterico's Pontifications

6/4/2010

John Wooden (1910-2010)

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 8:30 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

UCLA Basketball coach and legend John Wooden has died at age 99 in Los Angeles.

R.I.P.

— DRJ

8 Responses to “John Wooden (1910-2010)”

  1. A sad day. He was a man of legend, not because he was a great basketball coach, but he was a great basketball coach because he was a man of legend, the kind of person whose character and integrity came to be assumed, the kind of person who doesn’t demand respect, but commands respect just by who he was.

    MD in Philly (cb8efe)

  2. A gentleman. The kind who has, sadly, probably passed from our remainder permanently.

    JVW (36eb17)

  3. What a wonderful and gracious man and mentor! As a basketball player who grew up in Southern California, I’m sure I was just one of thousands who had Wooden’s “Pyramid of Success” up on his wall.

    One of my good friends (a die-hard UCLA fan) was given the honor of driving Wooden and his assistant to and from an engineering conference our company held in Palm Springs a number of years ago, where Wooden was the guest speaker. My friend said that the stories he heard and conversation he had with the coach were priceless.

    Rest in peace, Coach Wooden.

    GeneralMalaise (8de279)

  4. Funny anecdote: My friend knew Coach Wooden’s granddaughter and years ago he was invited to a family dinner. My friend and some others were shooting baskets in the driveway when Coach Wooden pulled up. My friend tucked the basketball under his arm and started walking towards the car to meet the great man. Coach Wooden emerges from the car, sees my friend walking towards him with the ball, and the very first thing he says to him is “Son, that’s traveling.”

    JVW (36eb17)

  5. This proud USC Trojan truly mourns the loss of a man who had an abundance of two things that have almost disappeared from our society: humility and perspective.

    There are a couple of stories in today’s LA Times regarding an aspect of the man about which I was ignorant, but are completely unspurprising — his life-long love affair with his wife, his high school sweetheart. TJ Simers is generally the southern end of a north-bound horse, but his piece on their marriage is touching.

    Fight On, and rest in eternal peace, Coach Wooden.

    Robert C. J. Parry (093fa9)

  6. He was a class act. His picture should be next to “old school” in the dictionaries, and I use that term in admiration.

    Beldar (75c3bc)

  7. Here is the link to the lovely story on Wooden’s devotion to Nell, his wife.

    That men would be so noble, that women so dearly loved. There was certainly joy in heaven as they met again.

    Dana (1e5ad4)

  8. A story related to his hiring at UCLA was that he was actively seeking the open position at one of the Big Ten schools (my recollection was the Univ of Minn). The school was ready to make the offer, but due to school president being caught in a snow storm and before the days of cell phones, they were unable to make the offer at the scheduled time. Wooden, then accepted the UCLA position, which was his second choice. When the school officials were finally able to make contact, Wooden had to turn the school down. His sole reason was that he had already accepted the the position at UCLA and he couldnt break his commitment even though the other school was offering more money.

    Joe (93323e)


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