By Harry Allison

John Thompson was Georgetown coach for almost 30 years, from 1972 to 1999, and was the first black coach to win an NCAA title in 1984 with Patrick Ewing.

Thompson played two seasons with the Boston Celtics and Bill Russell (two seasons, 74 games played), who was double NBA champion.

as a Hoya, he also coached Alonzo Mourning and Dikembe Mutombo.

When entering the Hall Of Fame, Allen Iverson paid a tribute to his former coach:

” I want to thank him for saving my life. After this incident, no more schools wanted to recruit me He recalled of his five-year prison sentence for an assault in a bowling alley. My mom went to Georgetown, and she begged John Thompson to give me a chance, and he did. “

In 27 years with the Hoyas, Thompson won 596 and played in the Final Four three times (1982, 1984, 1985). The year he left Georgetown, in 1999, he entered the Hall of Fame, and five years later, his son John Thompson III took over on the Hoyas bench. Before finally giving way to… Pat Ewing.

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