Former Cougars coach Guy Lewis to be inducted into Hall of Fame - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Former Cougars coach Guy Lewis to be inducted into Hall of Fame

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At age 91, former University of Houston coach Guy Lewis finally gets the call from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Lewis will be officially announced as one of the newest members of the Hall of Fame with the other inductees of the 2013 class during the Final Four in Atlanta on Monday.

"It's great," said Dena Lewis, Guy's wife, in an interview with FOX 26 Sports. "Long overdue.

"I cried when I heard. Just wonderful. Every time I think of it a smile comes across my face.

"He said, 'That's great.' "

Dena Lewis said receiving the news about her husband is one of the biggest moments in her life.

"Other than getting married, it's second," Dena Lewis said.

University of Houston officials have no comment.

Hall of Fame guard Clyde Drexler is ecstatic for his former coach.

"I am extremely excited for Guy Lewis and his family," Drexler said. "It's an honor that he deserved 20 years ago."

Considering Lewis won 592 games, as the Cougars earned five trips to the Final Four on his watch, Drexler had a point.

"It's just great that it happened while he's still alive and he can truly enjoy it," Drexler said.

"It was a foregone conclusion that there's been a mistake made. I'm glad that the people on the Hall of Fame committee, who are a class act, decided to make right the past wrongs."

Lewis led UH to back-to-back Final Fours in 1967 and 1968.

He was the architect of the 1968 "Game of the Century" between top-ranked UCLA and No. 2 UH, with the Cougars winning 71-69.

The game, played at the Astrodome, featured Elvin Hayes of Houston and the Bruins star then known as Lew Alcindor, both later became members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Lewis was among the first basketball coaches to recruit African-American players, signing Hayes and future NBA star and coach Don Chaney.

Lewis' most famous UH teams came with the group of players who became known as Phi Slama Jama from 1982-1984.

During that run the Cougars earned three consecutive trips to the Final Four, losing in the national championship game in 1983 and 1984.

A key member of those UH teams is former Cougars guard Reid Gettys.

"It's such a mixed emotion because you want to be happy and excited, and it's hard to get past the bitterness of how long overdue this honor is," Gettys said.

Lewis, UH coach from 1956-1986, is elected into the Hall of Fame nearly three decades after he retired.

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