At age 66 of respiratory failure, Sue Gunter, who coached women's basketball for 40 years, including 22 seasons at LSU. Gunter's 708 career wins rank third alltime among women's coaches behind Tennessee's Pat Summitt and Jody Conradt of Texas. Gunter (above) had 20 or more wins in 14 seasons. In September she will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. Gunter, who stopped coaching late in the 2003--04 season because of emphysema and bronchitis (her Tigers made it to the Final Four that spring), was the head coach of the 1980 U.S. Olympic women's basketball team, which won a qualifying tournament before the Olympics but did not compete because of the U.S. boycott of the Moscow Games. "I learned so much from Sue about the X's and O's of the game of basketball," said Summitt, who was her assistant on the 1980 team. "More importantly, she taught me about the delicate balance of coaching and teaching the game and the value of great player-coach relationships. She made playing basketball fun."
From NCAA tournaments, Native American nicknames, mascots and logos. The NCAA doesn't have the authority to force schools to change their nicknames and how they represent them, but the body is doing all it can to eliminate what it says are "hostile" and "abusive" practices. Eighteen programs, including the Florida State Seminoles and the Illinois Fighting Illini, were singled out by the NCAA. Those schools will be barred from hosting NCAA tournament events, and the NCAA is encouraging schools not to schedule games against them. Since there is no NCAA Division I football tournament, traditions such as Florida State's Chief Osceola (below) planting a burning spear into the turf before Seminoles games are safe. Nonetheless, Florida State president T.K. Wetherell was one of the most vocal opponents of the new policy. "That the NCAA would now label our close bond with the Seminole [tribe] as culturally 'hostile and abusive' is both outrageous and insulting," he said. "I intend to pursue all legal avenues to ensure that this unacceptable decision is overturned."
At age 51, jockey Pat Day, thoroughbred racing's alltime leading money winner, with nearly $298 million in purses. Day arrived at his decision to retire in much the same way he won 8,803 races: He took his time, then made his move. Day decided to hang up his tack last month after spending several days alone in a cabin on the Kentucky River. He had returned from hip surgery on May 18 but had been selective about where and when he rode. "The thrill of victory was decidedly less than I anticipated," Day (above) explained last week. "That led me to do a lot of soul-searching." The Brush, Colo., native won 12 Breeders' Cup and nine Triple Crown races, including the 1992 Derby aboard Lil E. Tee. Along the way he picked up the nickname Patient Pat. "On the turn for home, most guys break into the clear to make their move, and if you're following them, it can leave you in the clear too," says fellow Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey. "Not Pat. He'd wait so long for a hole that it would only be good for him, not anybody else."
By the NHL, Canucks right wing Todd Bertuzzi. Late in a 2004 game against the Avalanche, Bertuzzi hit Steve Moore with a blindside punch and drove him to the ice, leaving the Colorado center with a broken neck. Bertuzzi, 30, was suspended for the remainder of the season and the 2004 playoffs, and during last season's lockout he was banned from playing in any European pro league. Moore, 26, has yet to return to the ice. If he does, he won't see Bertuzzi. Under the terms of his criminal probation, Bertuzzi is not allowed to play in any game Moore takes part in. And commissioner Gary Bettman said Bertuzzi will be watched: "Mr. Bertuzzi is on notice that he will be held strictly accountable to a higher standard than other NHL players for his on-ice conduct during the 2005--06 season."
By LeBron James as his agent, Leon Rose. After last season the Cavaliers forward fired agent Aaron Goodwin, who had negotiated endorsement deals worth more than $135 million for him. Rose, who also represents Allen Iverson, will not have as much responsibility as Goodwin did; James, 20, has given many of his management duties to three longtime friends.
Of respiratory failure, Hunter Kelly, the eight-year-old son of Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly. Hunter, the second of the Kellys' three children, was born with Krabbe disease, a degenerative nervous system disorder for which there is no cure; he was not expected to live past age two. In 1997 his father and mother, Jill, established Hunter's Hope Foundation, which has raised $6 million. At his Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2002, an emotional Kelly honored Hunter, who was in attendance, saying, "It has been written throughout my career that toughness is my trademark. Well, the toughest person I've ever met in my life is my hero, my soldier, my son, Hunter."
Of injuries suffered in an Aug. 3 attack that killed 14 U.S. Marines in Iraq, Lance Cpl. Timothy Michael Bell Jr., a nephew of Royals manager Buddy Bell and cousin of Phillies third baseman David Bell. Corporal Bell, 22, was from suburban Cincinnati. "It kind of puts it in perspective for all of us," said David Bell. "I'm honored to be related to him. He's a hero."
DAVE MARTIN/AP (GUNTER)
REX BROWN/WIREIMAGE.COM (MASCOT)
ED REINKE/AP (DAY)