Jerry Tarkanian, the droopy-eyed, towel-chomping college basketball coach who transformed Nevada Las Vegas into a glitzy powerhouse as he waged a decades-long war against the National Collegiate Athletic Assn., has died. He was 84.
Tarkanian died Wednesday in Las Vegas, where he had been hospitalized for breathing difficulties, his family said. He had numerous health issues in recent years.
“Our hearts are broken but filled with incredible memories,” Tarkanian's wife, Lois, said in a statement released by the family.
Known as “Tark the Shark,” Tarkanian never had a losing record in 38 seasons, finishing 988-228 overall, with a major-college mark of 778-202. He won four California junior college state championships and four times led UNLV to the Final Four of the NCAA tournament.
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