NCAA Basketball

UCLA Legend John Wooden Dies at Age 99

| by Alex Groberman

Former UCLA coach John Wooden has passed away of natural causes. He was 99.

Wooden was checked into UCLA's Ronald Reagan Medical Center after reportedly not being able to eat for days. His health has been an issue for quite some time now, and he was hospitalized a few weeks ago for other medical concerns.

A UCLA athletic department official declined to comment on the situation.

Known as the Wizard of Westwood, Coach Wooden won 620 games throughout his storied career that began in at UCLA in 1948. At the time of his retirement following the 1974-75 season, the Bruins had won an amazing 10 titles in 12 seasons.

During his time at UCLA, Wooden coached all-time greats like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bill Walton. At one point during his dynasty, the Bruins won an NCAA-record 88 games in a row. He also never had a losing streak in 29 years.

Former Bruins star Bill Walton told the Associated Press from the NBA Finals that he last visited with Wooden two days ago at the hospital.

"He's the greatest," Walton said. "We love him."

Wooden was the first person to ever be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach.