View Full Version : (OT) Majerus ill, stepping down

01-28-2004, 03:16 PM
I am really sorry to hear this news. It's no wonder with his weight and I'm concerned for him. There isn't a classier guy in basketball than Rick. As a former Ball Stater he brought a great deal of respect to the basketball program while he was there.

01-28-2004, 03:19 PM
I hope he is OK. He is one of my favorites. I hope he gets into TV, he is excellent on TV dissecting games, great coach too.

01-28-2004, 03:21 PM
I hate to hear that. He always seemed like a person that had an excellent grasp of his role as a basketball coach and as a person mentoring young players.

Any link to the story? What is the issue and is it a temporary or permanent departure?


01-28-2004, 03:23 PM
In the ESPN.com article it says his weight is around 370. I hope he can get down to a good weight before it takes more of a toll on him. Definitely one of Indiana's great all-time coaches. Even though he wasn't at Ball State very long, he made an incredible mark on the university and the state.

I remember being at IU when he took a health sabatical and spent a season with coach Knight. It's probably the happiest I've seen Knight when Majerus was with him. Hopefully, Majerus can get some rest, get healthy, and be an invaluable member of the media. Great man.

01-28-2004, 03:25 PM
I hate to hear that. He always seemed like a person that had an excellent grasp of his role as a basketball coach and as a person mentoring young players.

Any link to the story? What is the issue and is it a temporary or permanent departure?



SALT LAKE CITY -- Rick Majerus was hospitalized Tuesday with heart problems and will resign as Utah men's basketball coach at the end of the season.

A team source told ESPN.com that Majerus will not coach again this season, so he has likely coached his last game at Utah. However, athletics director Chris Hill told ESPN.com he wouldn't rule out Majerus' returning this season and said Majerus has earned that right if he can.

Majerus, 55, was having dinner in Utah Tuesday night when he began having chest pains that grew in severity, the university announced Wednesday. He was hospitalized Tuesday night at the Santa Barbara (Calif.) Cottage Hospital.

Majerus contacted a cardiologist in Santa Barbara, and later flew there to start treatment. His condition was not immediately released Wednesday.

"It's been a tough day,'' Hill told ESPN.com as he prepared to tell the team the news. "He was emphatic that he's done at the University of Utah at the end of the season. He said he might want to help take this team as far as he can. But he's got to take care of his health.''

The news came as a shock to the staff. The assistants talked to Majerus about recruiting just Tuesday night, ESPN.com has learned. They had no idea this was coming.

"He's stepping down, definitely, at the end of the season," Mike Lageschulte, associate sports information director, told The Associated Press. "If he's doing better and can come back he will, but right now he definitely won't coach beyond this year."

Assistant coach Kerry Rupp will take over coaching duties in the interim.

Majerus flirted with leaving Utah in the offseason for a television career but returned to the Utes because he wanted to coach his incoming freshmen, notably Australian Andrew Bogut. But he had hinted even before this latest incident that he would leave Utah after this season.

"He has had a fantastic, unbelievable run at the University of Utah,'' Hill told ESPN.com. "It has been a wonderful run. The glory times of Utah basketball are during his regime. I was happy to work with him the whole time he was here.''

Majerus joined the university in 1989. In the 1990s, Utah ranked eighth among NCAA Division 1 programs in both wins, 250, and winning percentage, .767. The team has made 10 trips to the NCAA Tournament including advancing to the 1998 NCAA Final Four, losing to Kentucky in the national championship game.

Majerus' health problems have forced him to take extended leaves in two other seasons since he started at Utah.

Lageshulte told ESPN that the 6-foot Majerus weighs 370 pounds. "This is the heaviest I have ever seen him," Lageshulte said Wednesday.

He coached just six games in his first season before undergoing heart bypass surgery in December 1989. He coached one game in the 2000-2001 season before leaving to deal with health issues and care for his ailing mother.

Utah (15-5) has lost its last two games. Rupp coached the team in one game last season, filling in when Majerus left to attend the funeral of a stepfather of a former player.

But Majerus's career at Utah has been dotted with setbacks.

In September of 2001, Utah uncovered several minor NCAA violations, many within the men's basketball program, and cited a lack of departmental oversight over Majerus. The infractions ranged from a free meal for players at a tailgate party to milk and cookies for players at film sessions.

The investigation began after former ski coach Pat Miller threatened a lawsuit, alleging he was fired for an NCAA violation far less serious than others committed by other athletic department personnel.

After a two-year investigation, Utah's athletic program was placed on three years' probation last July. The violations included meals for men's basketball players and academic fraud on the football team. The bulk of the NCAA's concerns with the basketball team centered on meals that Majerus bought for players -- a rule that has been changed to allow for such meals as long as each one is documented.

The Utes may still participate in postseason tournaments and no restrictions were placed on TV appearances.

Just this month, university officials announced that Majerus was cleared in an investigation into a complaint by a former player who claimed the coach berated him about his partial hearing loss.

The investigation was launched after a complaint from former Utes center Lance Allred after the 2001-2002 season. Allred told The Salt Lake Tribune that Majerus used offensive, vulgar language two years ago when berating him and mentioned Allred's partial deafness. The 6-foot-11 center transferred to Weber State, citing constant abuse from Majerus.

Hill said he's not even thinking about a permanent head coach.

"That's the last thing that I'm thinking about right now,'' Hill said.

But, when the time comes, Utah State head coach Stew Morrill is expected to be one of the leading candidates to take over one of the premier programs in the West -- built by Majerus.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

01-28-2004, 04:01 PM
"milk and cookies for players at film sessions. "

It's nice to see the NCAA has their priorities straight.....


01-28-2004, 04:14 PM

I always hated the fact that he was a consultant to the Bucks...we didn't need him giving them any help.

Class guy otherwise.