When it comes to the Arizona Wildcats, nobody is as revered as Lute Olson. The Hall of Fame head coach is a legend in every way in Tucson, and now everyone is sending him and his family well wishes.
After suffering a minor stroke over the weekend, the 84-year-old Olson was admitted to Banner-University Medical Center Tucson. Thankfully, his physician doesn’t see this as a life-threatening episode.
“He is expected to make a full recovery but will likely need some rehabilitation therapy after his discharge from the hospital,” the school released in a statement from Dr. David Labiner, the chairman of the UA Department of Neurology.
Although Olson is in good condition and expected to be just fine, this is obviously scary for anyone who knows the impact he has made at Arizona. From 1983 until his retirement in 2008, Olson coached the Wildcats to 11 Pac-10 regular season titles, four Pac-10 Tournament titles, five Final Fours and won the 1997 NCAA Tournament national championship.
“Hall of Fame Coach Lute Olson has been hospitalized after experiencing a minor stroke. Coach Olson is not only an icon of our men’s basketball program and all of college basketball, but he is also an embodiment of greatness to Arizona Athletics, the University of Arizona and the Tucson community. Our thoughts are with Coach Olson, his family, and loved ones during this time.”
— The University of Arizona’s statement
The men’s and women’s Wildcats teams were both quick to send well wishes to Olson, who was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002 and the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
“On behalf of our Arizona Basketball program, and my own family, I want to wish Coach Olson well on his way to recovery from his recent stroke. At this time, we know that he is loved and supported by his wife, Kelly, and the rest of his wonderful family. He is also beloved by his entire basketball family and our great community that he has meant so much to for more than three decades.Advertisement
“My personal prayers and best wishes are with you, Coach O.”
— Arizona men’s basketball head coach Sean Miller
No further information is going to be released by the hospital, but it’s good to know the legendary basketball coach will recover from this.