Photo: Marquette Athletics

Marquette head coach Shaka Smart immediately honored George Thompson after defeating #6 ranked Baylor 96-70 at home last night. Thompson was a former Golden Eagles star from 1966-1969 who played in both the ABA and NBA (#24 retired by Marquette, 3x ABA All-Star). He passed away over the summer from complications with diabetes at the age of 74.

(via Marquette Golden Eagles):

“I’m really happy for everybody involved in Marquette basketball. Our players. Our staff. Our fans. Our students. I really felt like we needed to win tonight to honor George. If we were going to make it George Thompson night, we couldn’t lose. But I didn’t want to turn that into an avoidance goal. We kept it focused on what our team needs to go after. Baylor’s a heck of an offensive team and I thought guys in the 1st half set a great tone, just getting our hands on the basketball. When you go into a game and the game is bigger in the minds of your players than anything else, to me that’s the best recipe for winning. It should be that way all the time, but human nature sometimes messes with that. I thought we had that going for us tonight. We got a lot of contributions from a lot of different guys. I thought our guys passed the ball really, really well. Shared the basketball. So I’m just happy for everyone involved in our program.”