Former Georgetown basketball head coach John Thompson Jr, who died at the age of 78 on Monday, had an enormous impact on the basketball community. But even beyond his sport, Thompson's presence, attitude and success were felt by many others.
That became clear as numerous people came forward to pay their respects and share stories about how Thompson positively changed their lives or inspired them. Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera is among them, as the team released a statement from Rivera in honor of the legendary head coach.
A legend on and off the court 🙏— Washington Football Team (@WashingtonNFL) August 31, 2020
RIP Coach John Thompson. pic.twitter.com/NhiyCEPPWT
"I was saddened to hear the passing of an iconic coach in Coach John Thompson. He didn't just coach a sport, he taught life to his players. He was a true inspiration to those of us who have followed in the coaching and teaching profession."
Rivera's words about Thompson's ability to teach his players and peers about more than basketball was something many shared on Monday. From Allen Iverson to Dikembe Mutombo, his former players considered Thompson to be more than a coach, but a father figure as well.
As Rivera enters his first season as the head man in Washington, it appears that he will look to carry some of Thompson's lessons as he looks to help the team, organization and players improve as a whole.
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- Williams on Thompson: 'Spokesman' for the times
- Reactions: Beal, Mutombo and more
- Heartfelt reflection: Michael Wilbon
Ron Rivera says John Thompson Jr. is a 'true inspiration' for all coaches originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington