Former players, staff react to death of coach Jud Heathcote

Former players, staff react to Heathcote's death
Posted at 7:24 AM, Aug 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-30 12:35:08-04

Carlton Valentine is one of the many people who will remember coach Jud Heathcote. Valentine played for four years under the hall-of-famer, and looked up to him in his playing, and coaching career.

"He's going to be sorely missed," says Valentine.

MSU's athletic director, Mark Hollis, spent five years as a student manager for the MSU basketball team under coach Heathcote in the 80's. He says Heathcote inspired him, along with people like Magic Johnson, Tom Izzo, Steve Smith, and tons of other players and coaches.

"He was a guy that walked here on this campus that was pretty remarkable," smiles Hollis, "and somebody that should be respected, valued, and appreciated, and I know the group of people in my age group had that because we got to see it first hand."

Those players, coaches, and fans also got to see the legacy that he built for MSU basketball:

"He's one of those icons, right? He's an individual that not only had success when he was here, but you also have to look to the vision that he had," states Hollis. "I mean he was one of the individuals that thought coach Izzo was going to be a great head basketball coach."

Both Hollis and Valentine agree that vision will carry on with Izzo's teams and the stories of Heathcote will keep his legacy alive.