The Norman Transcript

Sports

December 9, 2012

Hundreds remember Majerus at funeral

MILWAUKEE — Hundreds of friends and fans gathered at Marquette University on Saturday to remember Rick Majerus, the impassioned college basketball coach who died of heart failure at 64.

Al Jensen, who played for Majerus at Utah and coached with him at Saint Louis University, recalled the portly man who loved food as much as basketball as a demanding coach and loyal friend.

“There wasn’t a man as unique as Coach. You can’t compare him to anyone else,” Jensen said.

Majerus was 517-216 over a 25-year career in which he had 15 seasons with at least 20 wins, plus two 30-win seasons. He led Utah to the NCAA championship game in 1998 and also coached at Marquette, Ball State and Saint Louis.

Majerus died of heart failure Dec. 1 in a Los Angeles hospital.

Jensen said no one ever made him as angry as Majerus occasionally did, but he always respected his coach’s passion and intensity.

“He pushed you to your utmost limits,” Jensen said.

The funeral was held at the Church of the Gesu at Marquette, the Jesuit school where Majerus began his coaching career as a student assistant to Al McGuire.

The Majerus family released a statement expressing thanks for the outpouring of sympathy.

“We cannot begin to express our sincere gratitude to everyone for their thoughts, prayers and well wishes during this difficult time for all of us,” the statement said. “Rick was certainly a public figure with a terrific sense of humor, a competitive spirit and a love of family, especially our mother, Alyce, his friends, players, fellow coaches and fans.”

Saint Louis’ 15 current players were listed as official pallbearers. About a dozen former Utah players attended the funeral, including Keith Van Horn, Andre Miller and Michael Doleac.

Also attending was Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers, who credited his former coach for providing tough love on the court and unconditional love off of it. Majerus gave Rivers his nickname.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • OU V Texas Casey sparks Sooners at the plate against Longhorns

    Oklahoma put runners in scoring position all night, but midway through Thursday’s series opener against Texas, the Sooners couldn’t do much with them. Heading into the bottom of the fifth, they had stranded a handful of runners, including ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tigers take series with Timberwolves

    Heather Jones made her final Crosstown Clash contest a game to remember....

    April 18, 2014

  • Shannon won’t face criminal charges

    Oklahoma linebacker Frank Shannon will not face criminal charges for an alleged sexual assault. Any punishment he receives will be through the University....

    April 18, 2014

  • Offense disappears in shutout loss to Mountaineers

    Everything Oklahoma did Thursday night looked rushed. It fell behind quickly, hacked at pitches early in counts and even recorded outs in a time-efficient manner....

    April 18, 2014

  • North girls escape with win over ESF

    EDMOND — Ranked No. 5 in the state and the winners of six straight games, three of them over top 10 teams, the Norman North girls looked every bit the dominant team Thursday night at Edmond Santa Fe … right up until they flirted with ...

    April 18, 2014

  • OU womens gym Sooners eager for title shot

    After fighting all season long to stay near the top of the women’s gymnastics rankings, the time has come for Oklahoma to show it belongs there. The NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships kick-off at 1 p.m. today and the second ranked ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fieger leads Senior PGA

    PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Gene Fieger shot a 3-under 69 in windy conditions Thursday to take a four-stroke lead in the Senior PGA Professional National Championship....

    April 18, 2014

  • Kuchar builds on momentum

    HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — There were no major letdowns for Masters contenders Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth at the RBC Heritage on Thursday. Kuchar, who tied for fifth at Augusta National, shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 to share the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Angel Jimenez set for Champions Tour debut

    DULUTH, Ga. — Miguel Angel Jimenez’s starring role in the best Masters ever for players 50 and over was the perfect lead-in for his Champions Tour debut....

    April 18, 2014

  • Puig focuses on baseball despite issues

    SAN FRANCISCO — Yasiel Puig believes he has the support from his Los Angeles Dodgers teammates and the club to help him keep his focus on baseball despite challenges off the field....

    April 18, 2014

Facebook