Coach Olson to Take Leave of Absence

Johnny Cruz
Nov. 4, 2007

University of Arizona Athletics Director Jim Livengood held a news conference on Sunday to confirm a leave of absence announced by UA Men's Basketball Coach Lute Olson.

Olson conveyed his decision to Livengood and UA President Robert N. Shelton Saturday night.

In the interim, Assistant Coach Kevin O’Neill will lead the team during Olson’s absence.

"I'm an assistant coach who is going to coach the team until the head coach gets back," O'Neill said.

O’Neill called the team together Sunday morning, at which time he and Livengood informed them of the situation.

"He's going to be back," Livengood said. "The timetable (for his return) has not been set."

Out of respect to Lute and Christine Olson, the University has no further comment on the matter beyond offering best wishes to Olson and his family, and looking forward to his return to the program.

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