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Utah basketball: Utes to retire Rick Majerus sweater on Saturday

Published January 31, 2013 10:12 pm

College basketball • Coach who led Utah to NCAA Tournament died in December.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

It's been long deserved. Utah will finally honor the legacy of former coach Rick Majerus on Saturday by retiring his trademark sweater and raising it to the rafters.

Majerus passed away in December. He was honored with a video tribute before a matchup against Boise State at the Huntsman Center. The school then announced its intention of retiring the sweater against Colorado. His sisters — Jodi and Tracy — are expected to attend, along with a host of other family members.

"It's going to be an emotional moment," Utah athletics director Chris Hill said. "Honestly, we wanted to do this some years ago. But Rick was coaching, and it was always hard trying to coordinate a time during basketball season when he was locked into coaching."

The ceremony will be one final honor for the job Majerus did while coaching the Utes into national prominence in the 1990s, one final link to the past while Utah marches on in the Pac-12 Conference.

That game in December against Boise State represents Utah's biggest win of the season. And while most of the current players are too young to remember Majerus leading the Utes to the national title game in 1998, the past few months have served as a crash course in learning of his contributions to the program.

"It's definitely an experience for a lot of them," Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said. "To be able to move forward, you have to embrace the past. So this will be a cool thing. Rick meant so much to Utah basketball. This is a well-deserved honor for him."

Bachynski back at practice

Two days after it was announced that sophomore center Dallin Bachynski was taking an indefinite leave from basketball, it appears the leave is on the verge of being over.

The 7-footer practiced on Thursday, and looked like the old Bachynski.

He was active in rebounding and posting up.

More importantly, he was vocal like he had been earlier in the season, not quiet and withdrawn like he had become in the last few weeks.

"That's a real encouraging sign," Krystkowiak said. "He's always been one of the most vocal guys on the team, a guy who is cheering everyone on. It's good to see this out of him."

Krystkowiak and Bachynski met Thursday morning. His status for Saturday's matchup against Colorado at the Huntsman Center is undetermined.

"We are taking things day by day," Krystkowiak said. "We don't want to place any undue expectation on Dallin."

Loveridge questionable

Jordan Loveridge is questionable for Saturday's game with a hyperextended knee.

tjones@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tjonessltrib —

Colorado at Utah

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