Eddie Sutton, Hall of Fame Basketball Coach, Dies at 84

John Healy
May 24, 2020 - 8:26 am

Legendary NCAA basketball coach Eddie Sutton, who was the first coach to take four different schools to the NCAA Tournament, died on Saturday in Tulsa, his family said in a statement. He was 84.

Sutton, who coached at Creighton, Arkansas, Kentucky, Oklahoma State and San Francisco, had an 806-326 career record in 37 seasons as a Division I head coach and took three teams – Arkansas (1978) and Oklahoma State (1995, 2004) -- to the Final Four. He was also a two-time AP National Coach of the Year in 1978 and 1986.

Sutton was informed he would join the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame less than two months ago as a member of the 2020 class. He will be inducted posthumously, along with Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.

Sutton’s most successful stint as head coach came with Oklahoma State, which he joined in 1990 and he reached 13 NCAA Tournaments, six Sweet 16s, three Elite Eights and two Final Four appearances. He retired in 2006.

In 2005, the school announced the court at Gallagher-Iba Arena would be named Eddie Sutton Court.

The Sutton family released a statement Saturday night:

“Our beloved Dad and Papa Coach Eddie Sutton, age 84, passed away peacefully of natural causes the evening of May 23rd at his home in South Tulsa. He was surrounded by his 3 sons and their families, which include his 9 adoring grandchildren. He is reunited with his number 1 assistant, his bride Patsy Sutton, who passed away in January of 2013 after 54 years of marriage.”

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