MSU assistant basketball coach retires after 40 years of coaching, 22 with Spartans
EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Michigan State University assistant basketball coach Mike Garland told News 10 “it was just time.” Time to move on and enjoy life after basketball at the age of 68.
Garland announced he is retiring after more than four decades of coaching with 22 of those years at Michigan State.
Garland started as a high school coach in 1977. He’s an old Northern Michigan teammate of Tom Izzo and has been with him during two different stays at MSU where he helped lead the Spartans to the 2000 National Championship, seven Final Fours, and ten Big Ten titles.
Garland’s son was gravely ill less than two years ago and he once spent 56 straight nights in the hospital with him in Cleveland.
He spoke with News 10′s Fred Heumann about how that strife helped lead him to this decision.
“I kind of knew then that it was time. It was time because during that time I didn’t know whether he would be here or if he would pass away,” Garland said. “We were fortunate to have the greatest doctors in the world and have the hand of the Lord on his life and he’s doing well right now. Going through that really, really swayed my decision.”
Garland was asked if he was leaving with mixed emotions.
“Ya know what? Not really, not really,” he said. “I didn’t want to say that and that’s why I paused. I’m joyful. I really am because you can’t have experienced the things I did and walk away sad. I mean half of what I’ve done, there are guys all over the country that would take that and walk out the door.”
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