University of Maryland to induct Len Bias into Athletics Hall of Fame
JUL 16, 2014 1:57p ET
More than 28 years after his death from a cocaine overdose, the University of Maryland announced on Wednesday it will induct Len Bias into its Athletics Hall of Fame.
Bias died on June 19, 1986, two days after he was the No. 2 overall selection in the NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics. It was subsequently determined that a cocaine overdose had led to the tragedy.
Bias' college coach, Lefty Driesell, told the Baltimore Sun he is glad his former star player will be honored.
"It's great to hear about Lenny," Driesell said. "I was elated that he got in. It's a long time coming."
Driesell told the paper Bias' death was a "tragic accident," following with some curious comments.
"He wasn't a drug addict, he had come back from celebrating becoming a multi-millionaire and he didn't know what he was doing and it killed him," Driesell said. "If he had died in an auto accident or drowned swimming, he would have been a hero. He was one of the greatest kids I ever coached."
“He wasn't a drug addict, he had come back from celebrating becoming a multi-millionaire and he didn't know what he was doing and it killed him.”
Bias was 22 when he died. He was the school's all-time leading scorer at the time, with 2,147 points.
The executive director of the M Club, Kevin Glover, said his organization, which oversees the process, was aware of the sensitive nature of the issue.
"I just think the selection committee took a lot of time and effort to look at his stats, to look at his accomplishments while he was here as a student-athlete and we just felt like the time was right," Glover told the Sun. "We all know it's a very sensitive issue, a lot of changes were made to the university back in the day because of this situation. Once we discussed it and the votes came in, we decided it was time to move forward and honor one of our greatest student-athletes ever."