"The Ultimate Virginia Gentleman, a Class Act and a Winner" - Hoos Talking's Jim Hobgood Remembers UVA Coach Terry Holland

UVA basketball head coach Tony Bennett during a game against UNC in early 2023.
UVA basketball head coach Tony Bennett during a game against UNC in early 2023. Photo credit Getty Images

Legendary University of Virginia men's basketball coach Terry Holland passed away at the age of 80 on Sunday (Feb. 26), and former Cavalier basketball forward and current Hoos Talking co-host Jim Hobgood joined Adam Epstein on Monday (Feb. 27) to remember him.

Hobgood first met Holland in 1968 when the latter was an assistant coach at Davidson and Hobgood had verbally committed to the college.

"He meant a lot," Hobgood said. "[...] I end up at Charlottesville, and he comes obviously to Charlottesville in the mid-'70s. I was in grad school, so I was what they used to call a 'graduate assistant coach' for two years under Coach Holland.

"He was the athletic director when I first got the radio job in '96, so I had a very close relationship to him in those years -- I've known him a long time. Obviously a great coach, probably a better person [with a] great sense of humor. He was a little bit of a prankster, just an unbelievable guy."

Holland had reportedly been diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2019.

"We knew this was coming because of the disease he had, but it's still tough," Hobgood added as he talked about a full-circle moment. "I was involved in the recruiting of Bobby Stokes, who was a player in the '70s, and he ended up going to med school. He was Terry's attending physician at the end, and I got a text message this morning at about six o'clock or so from Bobby, just giving me the heads up that coach had passed away."

Holland's collegiate record while helming Davidson and Virginia stood at 418-216, working with both colleges in other capacities after his coaching career as well as East Carolina University.

"The one thing I wrote down -- and maybe I forgot somebody -- but this is a list of people that coached for Terry that went on to be head coaches," Hobgood said. "Mike Schuler, Jim Larranaga, Craig littlepage, Seth Greenberg, Jeff Jones and Dave Odom. You got a lot of wins in that group of people [...] just shows the quality of the people that he got to help him and what they learned from Terry during their tenure as an assistant to him.

"The list of extraordinary players is just unbelievable," he said, "starting with Ralph Sampson, but you got to talk about Wally Walker, Jeff Lamp, Lee Raker, Bryant Stith, John Crotty -- I mean, there are too many to mention, but he basically changed Virginia basketball and was a great fit for the University of Virginia, as is [current head coach] Tony Bennett, and I know the two of them had a great respect for one another. Terry is really going to be missed."

Epstein closed the interview by asking Hobgood what he would use as a headline in remembrance of Holland.

"He was the ultimate Virginia gentleman, a class act and a winner," Hobgood said. "You kind of caught me off guard, but that's my initial reaction. [...] Just everything positive that you can imagine in a man, he represented that and he was referred to as professorial when he was on the bench. He could be pretty intense at times too, but always was respectful and just class and a true representative of the University of Virginia in the absolute best way."

You can hear more of the segment below.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images