SPOKANE, Wash. – The public is invited to a memorial Saturday in Spokane for legendary basketball coach Jud Heathcote, who died at the age of 90 years old in Spokane on Aug. 28.
Heathcote played college basketball at Washington State from 1946-1949. He then coached West Valley High School from 1950-1964. He would later become an assistant at WSU before earning his first college head coaching gig at Montana in 1971. He later moved out to East Lansing and coached the Spartans from 1976-1995. He led Michigan State to a National Championship in 1979. He also led Michigan State to three Big Ten titles. His most notable recruit is Magic Johnson.
Heathcote has left an indelible mark in the world of basketball. His coaching tree consists of Tom Izzo, Scott Skiles, Don Monson and Tom Crean.
During retirement, Heathcote returned to the Spokane area where he attended Gonzaga basketball games regularly.
The Michigan State athletic department announced the basketball team will wear a patch honoring Heathcote throughout the 2017-18 season. MSU also plans to honor the former coach with a tribute game against Purdue on Feb. 10 in East Lansing, Michigan.
The memorial service on Saturday will begin at 2 p.m. at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. If you are unable to attend, KREM 2 plans to live stream the service on Facebook and KREM.com.