RIP John Thompson

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He was to Georgetown like JC was to us. I will say he set a type of team culture (bad ass), never duplicated since in college basketball.

Perfect coach to do it.

He was the ultimate father figure to his players also. Legendary. RIP
 
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Georgetown was ranked once prior to Coach. He graduated 97% of his players. He cared. He also cared deeply about social issues. He was a hell of a man and a heel of a coach.
They faced blatant racism in his early years, Signs like "Patrick can't read" or worse. JT was having none of that.
Rest Easy big man.
 
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He was a college player when I was in college so I knew we were close in age.
His Georgetown powerhouse teams
were instrumental in building the reputation of the Big East .
People tend to forget how lowly Eastern Basketball was for a long time. The Last Eastern team to win was in the 1950’s .. I credit Dave Gavitt as the Architech However guys like Jonh, Lou, Rollie , and even the Cuse coach whose names escapes me were responsible for the actual construction. RIP John .
 
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Coach Thompson had an enormous positive impact on me at a young age. I just finished 7th grade when I went to PC basketball camp the summer after Ernie D's FF. You hear the coaches and councilors talking and they were particularly pumped for that mornings guest speaker, John Thompson on rebounding. They mentioned how great it was he got "that job". Of course, I had no clue what job that was then. I had never heard of Thompson. So I'm sitting on the floor upfront when coach comes into the gym. He was huge of course, even bigger from that angle.

I remember his talking about always having your arms up if you want to rebound. So later when we got to those Big East games and saw the G'town guys with their arms always up getting all the rebounds, I knew where that came from. He said, "You have to keep your arms in the air because I don't know anyone who can rebound with their feet!" All of a sudden cries rang out "Leon!" Leon!" Leon can rebound with his feet!" I immediately looked over to Leon. He was the camp nerd and looked the part. A 17 or so, dark haired Napoleon Dynamite with black calf socks. He had been catching crap all week from the older guys.

Coach says "Leon, please come up here." Leon, not thrilled with the attention walks up, stands next to Thompson, whereupon Coach puts his hand on Leon's shoulder and says, "I've been here watching you guys play. One thing I noticed about Leon is that he is giving his best at everything he does" Suddenly, Thompson steps forward and points to the biggest mouth and says, "Do you?!" He asked another couple of guys, they all had no answer and he says, "No, you don't. But Leon does. Trying your best, even under tough circumstances is a sign of being a man. Leon is a man." He turns to Leon, sticks out his hand and says, "Leon, it was my pleasure to meet you." I'll never forget that. Thompson was a righteous dude.
 
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8893

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Coach Thompson had an enormous positive impact on me at a young age. I just finished 7th grade when I went to PC basketball camp the summer after Ernie D's FF. You hear the coaches and councilors talking and they were particularly pumped for that mornings guest speaker, John Thompson on rebounding. They mentioned how great it was that he got "that job". Of course, I had no clue what job that was then. I had never heard of Thompson. So I'm sitting on the floor upfront when coach comes into the gym. He was huge of course, even bigger from that angle.

I remember his talking about always having your arms up if you want to rebound. So later when we got to those Big East games and saw the G'town guys with their arms always up getting all the rebounds, I knew where that came from. He said, "You have to keep your arms in the air because I don't know anyone who can rebound with their feet!" All of a sudden cries rang out "Leon!" Leon!" Leon can rebound with his feet!" I immediately looked over to Leon. He was the camp nerd and looked the part. A 17 or so, dark haired Napoleon Dynamite with black calf socks. He had been catching crap all week from the older guys.

Coach says "Leon, please come up here." Leon, not thrilled with the attention walks up, stands next to Thompson, whereupon Coach puts his hand on Leon's shoulder and says, "I've been here watching you guys play. One thing I noticed about Leon is that he is giving his best at everything he does" Suddenly, Thompson steps forward and points to the biggest mouth and says, "Do you?!" He asked another couple of guys, they all had no answer and he says, "No, you don't. But Leon does. Trying your best, even under tough circumstances is a sign of being a man. Leon is a man." He turns to Leon, sticks out his hand and says, "Leon, it was my pleasure to meet you." I'll never forget that. Thompson was a righteous dude.
Awesome story. Thanks for sharing it.
 
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Incredible story about him meeting with a huge DC drug dealing kingpin to protect his young players (Mourning & Turner):
 

nelsonmuntz

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I was actually defending Thompson. Nelson thought they underachievd. I don't think they did. They certainly weren't more talented than that loaded UK team, and I don't think they were better than UMass, as was proven on the court. You could debate if they were as good as that year's UConn team. The point being, they got as far as they should have.

What the heck is wrong with you? Is this thread about UMass? No? Then stop posting about UMass in a thread about the death of one of the greatest coaches in college basketball history. Have a little respect.
 
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Coach Thompson had an enormous positive impact on me at a young age. I just finished 7th grade when I went to PC basketball camp the summer after Ernie D's FF. You hear the coaches and councilors talking and they were particularly pumped for that mornings guest speaker, John Thompson on rebounding. They mentioned how great it was that he got "that job". Of course, I had no clue what job that was then. I had never heard of Thompson. So I'm sitting on the floor upfront when coach comes into the gym. He was huge of course, even bigger from that angle.

I remember his talking about always having your arms up if you want to rebound. So later when we got to those Big East games and saw the G'town guys with their arms always up getting all the rebounds, I knew where that came from. He said, "You have to keep your arms in the air because I don't know anyone who can rebound with their feet!" All of a sudden cries rang out "Leon!" Leon!" Leon can rebound with his feet!" I immediately looked over to Leon. He was the camp nerd and looked the part. A 17 or so, dark haired Napoleon Dynamite with black calf socks. He had been catching crap all week from the older guys.

Coach says "Leon, please come up here." Leon, not thrilled with the attention walks up, stands next to Thompson, whereupon Coach puts his hand on Leon's shoulder and says, "I've been here watching you guys play. One thing I noticed about Leon is that he is giving his best at everything he does" Suddenly, Thompson steps forward and points to the biggest mouth and says, "Do you?!" He asked another couple of guys, they all had no answer and he says, "No, you don't. But Leon does. Trying your best, even under tough circumstances is a sign of being a man. Leon is a man." He turns to Leon, sticks out his hand and says, "Leon, it was my pleasure to meet you." I'll never forget that. Thompson was a righteous dude.
I almost teared up reading that. I definitely smiled.
 
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That team reached the East Regional Final. They were run out of the building by UMass, but that was a great UMass team. The 1996 Kentucky team is considered one of the greatest ever, and UMass beat them by 10 points. Unfortunately for UMass, they lost in the rematch, which the defacto National Championship game.

Calapari cheated. On May 8, 1997, the NCAA Executive Committee voted to negate the Minutemen's 1996 NCAA Tournament record, for Marcus Camby's acceptance of agents' improper gifts.[1] The 35–2 record was reduced to 31–1, and the UMass slot in the Final Four is officially marked as "vacated." The Final Four trophy, banner and 45% of tournament revenue were returned to the NCAA. Camby reimbursed the school for the $151,617 in lost revenue.
 

Mr. French

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Born in 83, I wasn't a part of the 80s Big East lore ... I started getting into college hoops around 93/94. So I knew Mourning and those dudes, but not really their college careers. Iverson was the first Hoya I really knew about.

But I immediately felt JT's presence on those sidelines and really respected him right away. Nothing has changed there since, with stories from players, hearing him do westwood one tournament games on the radio, etc.

RIP Legend.

2021, please hurry.
 
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Georgetown was ranked once prior to Coach. He graduated 97% of his players. He cared. He also cared deeply about social issues. He was a hell of a man and a heel of a coach.
They faced blatant racism in his early years, Signs like "Patrick can't read" or worse. JT was having none of that.
Rest Easy big man.
Big John is one of the most important figures in sports, RIP.

That's nothing compared to the treatment Ewing received.
 
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Coach Thompson had an enormous positive impact on me at a young age. I just finished 7th grade when I went to PC basketball camp the summer after Ernie D's FF. You hear the coaches and councilors talking and they were particularly pumped for that mornings guest speaker, John Thompson on rebounding. They mentioned how great it was that he got "that job". Of course, I had no clue what job that was then. I had never heard of Thompson. So I'm sitting on the floor upfront when coach comes into the gym. He was huge of course, even bigger from that angle.

I remember his talking about always having your arms up if you want to rebound. So later when we got to those Big East games and saw the G'town guys with their arms always up getting all the rebounds, I knew where that came from. He said, "You have to keep your arms in the air because I don't know anyone who can rebound with their feet!" All of a sudden cries rang out "Leon!" Leon!" Leon can rebound with his feet!" I immediately looked over to Leon. He was the camp nerd and looked the part. A 17 or so, dark haired Napoleon Dynamite with black calf socks. He had been catching crap all week from the older guys.

Coach says "Leon, please come up here." Leon, not thrilled with the attention walks up, stands next to Thompson, whereupon Coach puts his hand on Leon's shoulder and says, "I've been here watching you guys play. One thing I noticed about Leon is that he is giving his best at everything he does" Suddenly, Thompson steps forward and points to the biggest mouth and says, "Do you?!" He asked another couple of guys, they all had no answer and he says, "No, you don't. But Leon does. Trying your best, even under tough circumstances is a sign of being a man. Leon is a man." He turns to Leon, sticks out his hand and says, "Leon, it was my pleasure to meet you." I'll never forget that. Thompson was a righteous dude.
Great story, I like him even more now.
 

UCDaveD

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I forget who it was, I think it was Bomani Jones, but they had a great take on the poor sap who had to be the one to tell Big John that Georgetown was firing JT III.

Heard stories about how Big John would invite local gang leaders into his office and lay down in no uncertain terms that his players were off limits. Dude was a boss.
 

gtcam

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:rolleyes:
What the heck is wrong with you? Is this thread about UMass? No? Then stop posting about UMass in a thread about the death of one of the greatest coaches in college basketball history. Have a little respect.
First, I recognize that you paid respect to JT - may he rest in peace and my fullest condolences to his family
You chastise a gentleman/woman for simply stating that he/she felt that they did not underachieve and then proceeded to state positives about GTown/JT. He didn't use UMass in his description. And yes, UMass was a better team that year.
Your write up was fine, as was his reply - Why describe Nova as being coked up?
Based on a few of your postings - folks in glass houses should not cast stones ;):rolleyes:
 
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I forget who it was, I think it was Bomani Jones, but they had a great take on the poor sap who had to be the one to tell Big John that Georgetown was firing JT III.

Heard stories about how Big John would invite local gang leaders into his office and lay down in no uncertain terms that his players were off limits. Dude was a boss.
He confronted a murdering cocaine kingpin who was getting to close to his players. He was an OG

Much respect
 
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Coach Thompson had an enormous positive impact on me at a young age. I just finished 7th grade when I went to PC basketball camp the summer after Ernie D's FF. You hear the coaches and councilors talking and they were particularly pumped for that mornings guest speaker, John Thompson on rebounding. They mentioned how great it was he got "that job". Of course, I had no clue what job that was then. I had never heard of Thompson. So I'm sitting on the floor upfront when coach comes into the gym. He was huge of course, even bigger from that angle.

I remember his talking about always having your arms up if you want to rebound. So later when we got to those Big East games and saw the G'town guys with their arms always up getting all the rebounds, I knew where that came from. He said, "You have to keep your arms in the air because I don't know anyone who can rebound with their feet!" All of a sudden cries rang out "Leon!" Leon!" Leon can rebound with his feet!" I immediately looked over to Leon. He was the camp nerd and looked the part. A 17 or so, dark haired Napoleon Dynamite with black calf socks. He had been catching crap all week from the older guys.

Coach says "Leon, please come up here." Leon, not thrilled with the attention walks up, stands next to Thompson, whereupon Coach puts his hand on Leon's shoulder and says, "I've been here watching you guys play. One thing I noticed about Leon is that he is giving his best at everything he does" Suddenly, Thompson steps forward and points to the biggest mouth and says, "Do you?!" He asked another couple of guys, they all had no answer and he says, "No, you don't. But Leon does. Trying your best, even under tough circumstances is a sign of being a man. Leon is a man." He turns to Leon, sticks out his hand and says, "Leon, it was my pleasure to meet you." I'll never forget that. Thompson was a righteous dude.
Awesome story.
Helluva coach, and a helluva MAN!
RIP
 
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What the heck is wrong with you? Is this thread about UMass? No? Then stop posting about UMass in a thread about the death of one of the greatest coaches in college basketball history. Have a little respect.
You were the one who accused him of underachieving when he did not. There were two clearly better teams than his that year, and he went as far as he should have.
 

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