Wooden ‘doing fine’, could be released from hospital Wednesday

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LOS ANGELES (AP) – Former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden may be released from a hospital as early as Wednesday after suffering from diverticulitis, his daughter said Tuesday.

The 95-year-old Hall of Fame coach was admitted to a hospital near his home in the San Fernando Valley on Sunday for diverticulitis, an inflammation of the area around the colon.

“His spirits are very good and he’s doing fine,” Nancy Muehlhausen said. “He’s ready to get out (of the hospital.)”

Muehlhausen said her father needed several blood transfusions. Other tests performed on Wooden showed the former coach was healthy, she said.

Wooden watched with his family as UCLA lost to Florida 73-57 on Monday in the national men’s basketball championship game. He was disappointed that his former team didn’t win but knew the Gators would be a tough matchup.

“Before the game he said it was a toss-up,” Muehlhausen said. “Much to our chagrin it didn’t work out the way we planned.”

Although he had some offers to attend the Final Four, there were no plans of returning to his home state of Indiana for the games. His most recent public appearance was last week in San Diego for the McDonald’s high school All-American games.

Muehlhausen also said that Wooden had to cancel a couple of speaking engagements this week.

Wooden retired from UCLA in 1975 with a record of 620-147 in 27 years as coach. The Bruins won 10 national titles under the “Wizard of Westwood,” including seven in a row. The streak included 38 straight NCAA tournament victories.

Wooden was the first person inducted into basketball’s Hall of Fame as a coach and player.

AP-ES-04-04-06 1703EDT

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