John Wooden, R.I.P.

John Wooden passed away during the night, he was 99 years old. It’s not an unexpected event as he has been very ill for some time. Until recently, he was in pretty good shape for a man of his age, and has been out and about quite a lot, continuing to receive the honors to which he is due.

In my opinion he is the greatest basketball coach who ever lived.

For today only, this website changes theme to black. It will be back to “normal” tomorrow.

This poem / prayer by Wooden was published in Sports Illustrated last week:

The years have left their imprint on my hands and face;

Erect no longer is my walk and slower is my pace.

But there is no fear within my heart because I am growing old;

I only wish I had more time to better serve my Lord.

When I’ve gone to him in prayer he has brought me inner peace,

And soon my cares and worries and other problems cease.

He’s helped me in so many ways, he’s never let me down;

Why should I fear the future when soon I could be near his ground.

Though I know down here my time is short, there is endless time up there,

And he will forgive me and keep me forever in his love and care.

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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6 Responses to John Wooden, R.I.P.

  1. John Wooden was a great coach and a gentleman. No trash talking, no promotion, no narcissism that are so much a part of the contemporary sports world today. This is a sad day. One of the Legends of Basketball is gone.

  2. william says:

    In many ways, he was more of a teacher/tutor than simply a coach. He had high standards and his players were blessed by his knowledge and ability. Unhappily, few BB coaches today have his character, knowledge, or ability — but especially his character.

  3. Evan Lewis says:

    I saw this guy in the early 70s when he and Bill Walton came to Pullman and whupped the butts of the WSU Cougars. I subsequently forgave them both.

  4. Richard says:

    I saw him coach several games, a few at UCLA, one at Arizona, one when they played Cal State Fullerton (that was a while ago) as well as many games on television including all those NCAA tournaments. The kids played really hard for him, and he taught them, coached them really well.

  5. Carl V. says:

    He was indeed a fantastic coach. That poem/prayer is fantastic.

  6. Barbara says:

    What an amazing life! We normal souls can only hope to make our epitaphs half as heartfelt with praise as John Wooden’s. He taught great values to several generations of students and athletes.

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