Yesterday, the college basketball world lost a legend.
Not many people know the name Rick Majerus outside of college basketball followers. The always happy, incredibly intelligent and tactical coach was a legend on the court, especially for the 4 schools he coached for. Majerus unfortunately passed away yesterday at the age of 64 due to heart failure.
Rick Majerus didn’t coach at the blue chip programs, but he took teams that weren’t exactly on the map because of basketball, and turned them into successful programs. Majerus had a 25-year coaching record of 517-216, including 15 20-win seasons and two 30-win seasons during his coaching career. He brought Utah to the 1998 NCAA Final, and only had just one losing season.
Rick Majerus was a guy who could be on the Mount Rushmore of college basketball coaches, along with a big name like John Wooden. (Getty Images)
Along with Utah he coached at Ball State (and gave them their first NCAA tourney victory afte a 29-3 season), Marquette, and Saint Louis, and was beloved everywhere he went.
“Rick left a lasting legacy at the University of Utah, not only for his incredible success and the national prominence he brought to our basketball program, but also for the tremendous impact he made on the young men who were fortunate enough to play on his teams,”
“His standard of excellence extended beyond the basketball court and into the academic and personal success of his players.
-Utah AD Dr. Chris Hill
He even gave one of the NBA’s best his nickname..
That’s a tough one for me,” ”He’s the one that gave me my nickname.
-Doc Rivers, Head Coach of the Boston Celtics, and guard at Marquette under Majerus
Majerus was a tactical, passionate, and fun loving coaching, and our deepest condolences go out to his friends and family at this time.
It’s a sad day for college basketball.
(Jim Owens/Icon SMI)
Quotes attributed to the Associated Press