Cincinnati coach Mick Cronin has aneurysm, will be sidelined indefinitely

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    Cincinnati interim head coach Larry Davis (center) watches his team against Virginia Commonwealth in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)


    Cincinnati's coach Mick Cronin directs players against San Diego State in the first half of their NCAA college basketball game in Cincinnati Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Tom Uhlman)


    CINCINNATI — Cincinnati basketball coach Mick Cronin has an aneurysm and will be sidelined indefinitely while doctors decide how to treat it.

    The unruptured aneurysm was detected when the 43-year-old coach got tests this week to see why he's been having headaches.

    An aneurysm is a bulge in the wall of a blood vessel. A school spokesman declined to say exactly where Cronin's is located.

    Cronin told his players about 90 minutes before Saturday's matchup with VCU that he would not be on the sideline. He did not stay for the game, a 68-47 loss.

    "He said, 'I'm not dying — I've got a medical condition right now that the doctors are going to require me to stay out of the game until they know exactly how to treat it,'" said associate head coach Larry Davis, who will run the team in Cronin's absence.

    Cronin was ill but coached during a 71-62 overtime home victory over No. 19 San Diego State on Wednesday. He told his staff Friday that he might have to take time off.

    Cronin sent out a series of tweets before Saturday's game thanking well-wishers for their support.

    "I want everyone to know I am going to be ok!" he tweeted.

    Cronin added: "Obviously, not coaching was a tough pill to swallow, but as a teacher I ask my players to be smart and make the right decisions. To listen to the people that know what's best for you. It is time for me to listen now, to my Doctors and follow their game plan. I hope to be back ASAP but that will not be my call. As I love to say 'I am always day to day.' So, that really applies now."

    Davis and players said they couldn't use Cronin's absence as an excuse for Saturday's loss.

    "He is our leader, but we should have overcome it and played harder because he wasn't here," senior forward Jermaine Sanders said.

    Cronin is in his ninth season as the Bearcats' coach. He was an assistant at Cincinnati and Louisville before becoming head coach at Murray State for three years. He returned to his hometown to rebuild the program after Bob Huggins was forced out before the 2005-06 season.

    "It's hard," Davis said. "Kids adjust, but to sit here and tell you it's no big deal, it is a big deal. Mick's put his heart and soul into this program and building this program up. ... We weren't our aggressive self, Cincinnati basketball self.

    "Blame that on whatever you want to blame that on, but if we're going to continue on — and whether Mick's going to be back the next game or it's three games from now — whenever he comes back, we've got to play Cincinnati basketball."


    AP freelance writer Kevin Goheen contributed to this report.


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