Not many have made the kind of impact on a sport like John Thompson. Former 76er Allen Iverson has said over and over again, he doesn’t know where he’d be if it weren’t for Thompson’s encouragement and tough love. Sadly Thompson passed away this morning at the age of 78, dealing yet another blow to an already hurting sports world.
The Pride Of Georgetown
Thompson’s name is synonymous with Georgetown University. They truly are one in the same. He brought them a national championship in 1984 and three Final Four appearances in the decade. Thompson is also the longest tenured coach in the schools history by a mile, roaming the side lines for 27 years for the Hoyas. And in that time he groomed some of the greatest players to ever play.
The Producer Of Legends
As mentioned before Allen Iverson is one of many NBA legends to have played under Thompson. It was Thompson’s constant pushing that propelled Iverson to be the first over all pick in the 96 NBA Draft. Other great Hoyas of note include Patrick Ewing, Dikembe Mutombo, Alonzo Mourning, and Othella Harrington. All of these players went on to long NBA careers, with everyone except Harrington eventually reaching the Hall of Fame.
Thompson will be sorely missed and his passing will no doubt be seen as a tremendous loss to the sport of basketball.