Yellow Pages |   News Updates |   Events Calendar |   Movie Times | Recycling  |   Document Shredding
Rocklin & Roseville Today Events
Travel, Business and Entertainment Marketing
HOME

Basketball Coaching Legend Don Meyer



On September 5, 2008, Don Meyer, the men's basketball coach at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, was heading up a convoy of six cars toward a team preseason retreat. Apparently falling asleep at the wheel, Meyer drifted over a lane and hit a semi-truck head-on going 50 mph. In the crash, all his left-side ribs were broken, he lost his spleen and parts of his intestines, and he endured multiple compound fractures of his left leg. Two weeks later, doctors amputated that leg below-knee.

As if that wasn't enough, when opening him up, surgeons discovered cancer in his liver. At the time, 64-year-old Meyer was only 11 victories shy of passing Bobby Knight as the all-time win leader in men's college basketball history.

"I wouldn't be alive today if it hadn't been for the team," Meyer said in a telephone interview. "I owe them an awful lot. They were right there, keeping me awake (until help arrived) and dialing 911 to get the helicopter there. Now they still keep me going. I don't think about all this other stuff (such as cancer and an amputation) when I'm thinking about them."

Using a manual wheelchair, Coach Meyer returned to his job for a November 18 contest against Mount Marty College, a 98-57 victory.

Where does he get his strength? "I have to be strong for our team now," he said. "When alone with my wife, I might not be as strong, and I might break down and cry and wonder how I'm going to deal with (the cancer). When you are with people you work with, it's easier to be strong."

He expressed a much greater appreciation, understanding, and empathy for below-knee amputees. He doesn't have all the answers, he said, and has been just as scared as anyone would be. He lamented not being able to do many things once taken for granted, such as taking the old newspapers out for recycling to help his wife. Around home, he uses a walker as much as possible.

As for passing Knight, Meyer said, "The only important thing now is the next practice. It's a day by day thing. It's the team at hand that's the most important. If you take care of that, those other things (such as winning) will take care of themselves."

Next week: How Coach Meyer copes.

 


Sponsored by Blue Valley Sod.

Daniel J. Vance is a licensed professional counselor and national certified counselor from Vernon Center, Minn. His weekly newspaper column Disabilities has been published in more than 260 newspapers.

Daniel J. Vance may be reached at www.danieljvance.com



Placer County News Headlines

Craft Beer to Explore in Napa ValleyNapa Valley, CA,- The Napa Valley is renowned for its mastery of the grape, but it is also gaining appeal for its craft breweries and taprooms that offer IPAs, ambers, wheats, pilsners, porters and more

Sacramento County Fair May 24- 28Sacramento, Calif., - Excitement, anticipation, and exhilaration await attendees of the 82nd annual Sacramento County Fair!

Stroke Awareness: Knowing the signs can help save livesEvery 40 seconds someone in the U.S. has a stroke, according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Sacramento Museums to Hold Rally at State CapitolSACRAMENTO, Calif. - In 2018, Sacramento Area Museums is celebrating 20 years as a collaborative organization and plans to mark the important milestone with a rally

Capital Classic Hockey Tournament in RosevilleRoseville, CA - Placer Valley Tourism is thrilled to be teaming up with Capital Thunder Youth Hockey to bring the inaugural Capital Classic Hockey Tournament

Placer County HHS Programs National Achievement AwardsAuburn, CA,- Nine Placer County programs have been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties this year

Vibes & Vines Concert Featuring Michael Franti & Friends to Benefit Do It For The LoveBottleRock Napa Valley presents Vines & Vibes, the fourth annual Do It For The Love Benefit Dinner and Concert on Thursday, May 24, 2018, on the rooftop of the Archer Hotel

Lake Tahoe's Ridge Resorts' Kelly Smith named Associate Of The Year(STATELINE, Nev.) - Kelly Smith, lead loan servicing specialist and the newly awarded employee of the year at The Ridge Resorts, is packing her bags

Napa Valley Health and Wellness Choices AboundNapa Valley, CA-- The Napa Valley offers many health and wellness options for visitors, and the valley's resorts and spas are creating unique and memorable guest experiences

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats Tour DatesLast night, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats performed their lead single "You Worry Me" on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Eldorado Resorts debuts THE ROW in RenoRENO, Nev. -Eldorado Resorts, Inc. presents a one of a kind, unified and distinguished resort experience with the addition of THE ROW-a newly branded destination in the heart of Reno

WJU Warriors Fall in Tight Battle with PioneersLINCOLN, Calif. - Jessup baseball took the field for their second game of the NAIA Opening Round at McBean Park facing No. 3 Antelope Valley, both teams undefeated


more news