Legendary University of Missouri basketball coach Norm Stewart will be honored by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association with a lifetime achievement award Monday night in St. Louis in recognition of his coaching career and role in inaugurating and continuing to help grow the “Coaches vs. Cancer” charity.
But Stewart, 83, isn't able to attend after suffering an undisclosed illness in California last week.
Reached by telephone Sunday, Stewart was in good spirits and said he was out of the hospital but that doctors had told him he is not ready to travel yet. He greatly regrets being unable to attend the banquet, where he will be represented by former MU star Steve Stipanovich.
In addition to Stewart, who finished his first of 32 seasons at MU 50 years ago this spring, Among others to be recognized tonight at the Missouri Athletic Club will be longtime referee Ed Hightower and USBWA annual awards that were voted on before the NCAA Tournament:
Villanova’s Jalen Brunson (winners of the USBWA’s national player of the year award, the Oscar Robertson Trophy); Oklahoma’s Trae Young (freshman of the year, the Wayman Tisdale Award) and Virginia’s Tony Bennett (coach of the year, the Henry Iba Award), who has spoken eloquently about the meaning of No. 1 seed Virginia's loss to 16th-seeded UMBC in the first round of the tournament.