By BETH HARRIS AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES — Greg Lee, who helped UCLA to consecutive national championships in 1972 and ’73 as a starting guard under Coach John Wooden, has died. He was 70.
Lee died at a San Diego hospital on Wednesday from an infection related to an immune disorder, the university said Thursday after being informed by his wife, Lisa.
Lee became a starting guard on the varsity team as a sophomore in 1971-72, alongside Bill Walton and Jamaal Wilkes. The Bruins had a 30-0 record while winning games by an average margin of over 30 points. They beat Florida State 81-76 in the national title game.
The following season, the Bruins again went 30-0 and won the national championship, 87-66 over Memphis State.
During Lee’s senior year in 1973-74, UCLA’s 88-game winning streak was snapped in a 71-70 loss to Notre Dame. The Bruins’ run of national titles also ended at seven when they were beaten by North Carolina State, 80-77, in double overtime in the NCAA Tournament semifinals.
Lee averaged 5.8 points and 1.5 rebounds in 88 games with the varsity, which compiled an 86-4 record during his three seasons.
In that era, freshmen weren’t allowed to compete, so Lee, Walton and Wilkes helped UCLA’s first-year team to a 20-0 record while Lee averaged 17.9 points.
College Sports |
Karl Dorrell focused on Colorado coaching job, not UCLA nostalgia
Would UCLA be worse off financially in the Big Ten? The Pac-12 commissioner thinks so
UCLA and Oaks Christian football are closer than they appear
Former UCLA basketball player Jalen Hill dead at 22, his family says
UCLA’s Zach Charbonnet remains limited at practice ahead of Pac-12 opener
Lee grew up in Reseda as the youngest of three brothers (Chris and Jon). He attended Reseda High and was honored as the valedictorian of his senior class before enrolling at UCLA. His father, Marvin, played basketball at UCLA under coach Wilbur Johns, who preceded Wooden.
After leaving UCLA, Lee played professionally in the ABA and NBA. He briefly played for the Portland Trail Blazers in 1975-76, reuniting with Walton, before playing in Germany for several seasons.
Throughout the 1970s, Lee competed on the professional beach volleyball circuit. He won 29 titles while appearing in 39 finals during his career.
After his playing days ended, Lee earned a teaching credential from UCLA. He taught math at Clairemont High in San Diego and coached varsity basketball and tennis.
Besides his wife of 48 years, Lee is survived by his son Ethan, daughter Jessamyn Feves, and his brother Jon.
UCLA basketball coach John Wooden listens to Greg Lee, left, during a timeout in a January 1974 game against Iowa at Pauley Pavilion. Lee, who helped UCLA to consecutive national championships in 1972 and ’73 as a starting guard under Wooden, has died. He was 70. (AP Photo, File)