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Former Notre Dame head coach Digger Phelps diagnosed with bladder cancer

Apr 25, 2013, 11:25 PM EDT

Dick Vitale, Richard Phelps AP

The college basketball world learned some bad news late Thursday, as ESPN announced that current analyst and former Notre Dame head coach Digger Phelps has been diagnosed with bladder cancer.

Phelps has undergone surgery and will begin treatment near his home in South Bend, Ind. next week, according to the report.

In a brief statement, Phelps said that “he and his family appreciate your thoughts and prayers as he prepares for the 2013-2014 college basketball season.”

In 21 seasons as a head coach Phelps amassed a record of 419 wins and 198 losses, with 393 of the victories coming during his 20 seasons at Notre Dame. Among those victories are seven wins over top-ranked opponents, the most famous of which being Notre Dame’s 71-70 victory over UCLA on January 19, 1974.

Here’s to a speedy recovery.

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

  1. cranespy - Apr 26, 2013 at 12:49 AM

    Be strong Digger…….every fan of NCAABB wishes you a speedy recovery!

  2. badintent - Apr 26, 2013 at 2:43 AM

    Our prayers for your good health and I love your TV commerical with Knight

  3. fanofevilempire - Apr 26, 2013 at 3:08 PM

    rip digger, he was a really good coach.
    he will be missed.

    • namriverrat69 - Apr 29, 2013 at 12:27 AM

      You might want to read the article. He was diagnosed with bladder cancer. He is not dead.

  4. chumthumper - Apr 27, 2013 at 2:11 AM

    Another example of bad things happening to good people.

  5. namriverrat69 - Apr 28, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    I’ve never liked the Golden Domers but I always liked and respected you as a coach Digger although back then as a kid growing up in Tucson I rooted for UCLA. I outgrew that a long time ago when Arizona moved into the Pac 12. You had some great teams – especially the one that ended UCLA’s 88 game winning streak. What a great game it must have been for you to coach against John Wooden in his heyday.

    Hang in there and keep the faith Digger. Prayers are flowing your way from across the country.

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