Legendary UCLA Coach John Wooden Dies at 99

By BETH HARRIS
|  Saturday, Jun 5, 2010  |  Updated 4:16 AM PDT
Email
|
Print
In Memoriam

Getty Images

3 DEC 1994: EX-UCLA HEAD COACH JOHN WOODEN WATCHES THE ACTION DURING THE INAGURAL WOODEN CLASSIC TOURNAMENT AT THE POND IN ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA. Mandatory Credit: Al Bello/ALLSPORT

advertisement
Photos and Videos
More Photos and Videos

John Wooden, college basketball's gentlemanly Wizard of Westwood who built one of the greatest dynasties in all of sports at UCLA and became one of the most revered coaches ever, died Friday night. He was 99.

The university said Wooden died Friday night of natural causes at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, where he had been hospitalized since May 26.

With his signature rolled-up game program in hand, Wooden led the Bruins to 10 NCAA championships, including an unmatched streak of seven in a row from 1967 to 1973.

Over 27 years, he won 620 games, including 88 straight during one historic stretch, and coached many of the game's greatest players — including Bill Walton and Lew Alcindor.

As a coach, he was groundbreaking trendsetter who demanded his players be in great condition so they could play an up-tempo style not well-known on the West Coast at the time.

But the Wizard's legacy extended well beyond that.

He was the master of the simple one- or two-sentence homily, instructive little messages best presented in his famous "Pyramid of Success," which remains must-read material, not only for fellow coaches but for anyone in a leadership position in American business.

NBC Los Angeles has learned that Wooden's funeral will be private.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
Email
|
Print
Bay Area Proud
Bay Area Proud is NBC Bay... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out