UC Irvine will retire the No. 12 jersey of former basketball star Scott Brooks at halftime of Saturday evening’s game against Eastern Michigan at Bren Events Center.
The number will be the second retired by the UC Irvine men’s basketball program. The other was Kevin Magee’s No. 44, which was retired in 1995. The only other athletic number at UC Irvine to be retired was former baseball coach Mike Gillespie’s No. 19, which was retired last year.
“I’m humbled and honored with this recognition,” said Brooks, now the Washington Wizards coach. “UCI holds a special place in my heart. I am grateful to coach Bill Mulligan and my teammates who I share this honor with. It is a privilege to be joining Kevin and Mike with this special distinction.”
Brooks said he wore No. 12 because it was his mother Lee’s favorite number.
Brooks transferred to UC Irvine in 1985 from San Joaquin Delta College, a community college in Stockton. Brooks averaged 16.8 points per game in his two seasons with the Anteaters, including 23.8 points per game as a senior, the most of any player on the West Coast.
Brooks scored 43 points on the opening night of the Bren Events Center, a 118-96 victory over Utah State on Jan. 8, 1987.
Brooks played 10 seasons in the NBA, including on the Houston Rockets’ 1994 championship team.
Brooks was selected as the NBA’s coach of the year in the 2009-10 season when he guided the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 50-32 record in his first full season as coach, winning 28 more games than the previous season.
Brooks coached the Thunder to the 2012 NBA Finals, where they lost to the Miami Heat.
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