Down goes Huggs
It came across the news last week that West Virginia University basketball coach, Bob Huggins, was hospitalized in Las Vegas with four broken ribs following a fall. Early on there wasn’t a lot of information out there about details. As some hours passed by more news became available.
First, there was the report that the doctors were concerned that he may have punctured a lung. Then came a report that Huggins actually broke seven ribs, and no internal damage, but the coach was in a great deal of pain.
You think? One broken rib with a cough or sneeze can be brutal, but times seven?
It wasn’t what was being reported that was most interesting, but the internet chatter and water cooler chit chat was very interesting about what was presumed to have happened. Even though details of the fall were not immediately available, it was almost universally accepted that Huggins had fallen because he may have had a few too many to drink.
He was in Las Vegas after all, and who hasn’t fallen in Vegas? Don’t lie, just because what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, will not get you a pass on this one. Even if you are sober, there is a good chance someone who isn’t will knock you down.
The Huggins thing was funny, in a way. He had a well publicized DUI when he was in Cincinnati which likely led to his dismissal there. Now though, every time the coach shows up with a bruise it is assumed he had been drinking. Maybe, maybe not. The speculators sure were roasting him last week. Some even suggested that new athletic director, Oliver Luck, would come in, sit Huggins down and read him the riot act. I may have missed it, but Huggins was not getting a lot of support.
Well, maybe support is not the right word in this case. It
wasn’t like the coach was being condemned, it will take a lot more than a drunken stumble to get the majority of WVU fans down on him, quite the contrary. Huggs has plenty of leeway in this state. It just seemed a little odd that few, if any, were saying, “Let’s see what happened.”
When details emerged about what happened, the picture the speculators were painting was rebuffed. According to the report, Huggins, who was in Vegas scouting a top level AAU tournament, was returning to his hotel room from an afternoon game to get his luggage and go to the airport. That is when he fell.
Does that mean he wasn’t wasted? Doesn’t prove he wasn’t, but the time line of the game makes that scenario less likely. Lying on the floor with seven broken ribs did present Huggins with a challenge. Like how to get help. Basically immobile, Huggins eventually was able to get a call to his brother who was able to summon help. It wasn’t clear if making the call was simply a matter of digging his cell phone out of his pocket, or if he had to crawl somewhere to get to a phone, but some time did pass before a call got through.
If the LifeCall medical alarm company ever wants to rekindle its, “I’ve fallen and can’t get up” advertising campaign from the early ’90s, Huggs could be their person.