Oklahoma State basketball: Doug Gottlieb’s tribute to Patsy Sutton
Patsy Sutton died Tuesday at the age of 74. The wife of Eddie, the mother of Steve, Sean and Scott. She was a charming woman. I got to know her in my six years on the OSU basketball beat. She met Eddie Sutton in Stillwater, her hometown, while they were OSU students in the 1950s and she enjoyed her family’s return to Stillwater in 1991 for what became a memorable 15-year coaching renaissance at their alma mater.
Among the Suttons’ players was Doug Gottlieb, the OSU point guard for three season, 1997-00, who now is a rising star in the media world, having just left ESPN for CBS, where he has relocated his radio show and for whom he will call college basketball games.
On his Facebook account, Gottlieb wrote a stirring tribute to Patsy Sutton that I thought was worth sharing:
“Patsy Sutton died today. As a basketball family, we have all lost something more dear to us than any game could ever mean. We lost our mother. Momma Sutton, like all the Sutton women, was amazing in her strength through tough times and her grace in good times. She was always there for us. Coach might want to send you home, but Patsy Sutton could give you a hug and tell you she loved you and suddenly the old man did not seem so bad.
“It is very easy to think this is all hokey, but you have to understand Stillwater, OSU basketball and how special she was in order to relate. Stillwater is home to the best three years of my life, but it is far from anything else I knew when I arrived: 48,000 residents; 25,000 students; no mall, few restaurants and exactly zero hills in Payne County. But while the land might be a bit barren, it is a wellspring of kind, wonderful people and ridiculously attractive women.
“My parents have known the Suttons since the ’60s when my dad coached with Coach at Creighton. Patsy was always warm and my mom remembers that she once came over for dinner, sans children, and told my mom how happy she was to have a conversation with someone who ‘cuts their own meat.’ So she always looked out for me, was there for me, was sweet to me and I frankly needed it. Though I am blessed to have two healthy parents, they were in California and my defacto father (Coach) made me a bit of the whipping boy. I could take it, but Patsy helped.
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