Hall of Fame basketball mentor Lute Olson, who crafted Arizona into a nationwide electrical power and guided the Wildcats to the school’s only NCAA championship, has died at age 85.
Olson was hospitalized last yr just after suffering a stroke, and was just lately moved into hospice care.
His death was confirmed by household to Arizona media shops.
Olson went 589-187 in 24 seasons at Arizona and guided the Wildcats to 4 Remaining 4 appearances, 23 consecutive NCAA tournaments and 11 Pac-10 titles, as well as the national title in 1997.
He was inducted into the Pro Basketball Corridor of Fame in 2002 and the School Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006, and a statue of Olson was erected outdoors the McKale Memorial Middle in 2018.
Olson concluded his coaching occupation with a file of 776-285 in 34 seasons at Arizona, Iowa and Prolonged Beach front Condition.
Arizona received just 4 games in 1982-83, the year before Olson arrived in Tucson, and had achieved the NCAA tournament two times considering that 1951.
But the Wildcats turned matters all around rapidly beneath Olson, reaching the NCAA match in his next period at the university and advancing to the school’s first Last 4 in 1987-88, when they completed 35-3.
Arizona arrived at the Last Four all over again in 1994 right before successful its to start with and only NCAA title in 1998, when freshman Mike Bibby and junior Miles Simon led Olson and the Wildcats earlier heavily favored Kentucky in the championship activity.
The Wildcats also state-of-the-art to the nationwide championship recreation under Olson in 2001, when they were defeated by Duke.
Olson started off his coaching career in 1973-74 at Prolonged Beach front Condition, the place he went 24-2, prior to remaining hired at Iowa the next season. He coached the Hawkeyes to the NCAA event five instances in 9 seasons.
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