John Wooden was already immortalized in UCLA lore with his decade of dominance as UCLA’s basketball coach.
But now, Wooden’s image will be further engrained in Bruin history, when UCLA unveils a statue of Wooden outside of Pauley Pavilion on Oct. 26, just a couple weeks before the men’s basketball team debuts at the new Pauley against Indiana State.
“The statue is a monument to a man who touched countless lives and showed us what it means to lead with integrity, humility, compassion and commitment,” said UCLA Chancellor Gene Block in an official statement. “I speak for many when I say with pride that his image will forever grace the main entrance to Pauley Pavilion.”
Of course, John Wooden’s influence at UCLA goes beyond his dominance as head coach of the Bruins when he won ten NCAA titles between 1964 and 1975.
Wooden essentially propelled college basketball into popularity during his time while also producing basketball legends such as big men Bill Walton and Lew Alcindor (also known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar). Furthermore, Wooden’s philosophy on life and framework for success was met with positive reception; Wooden wrote a book detailing his Pyramid of Success and has given countless lectures on the topic.
UCLA basketball season re-opens Pauley Pavilion on November 9.