DeMatha High School basketball coach Morgan Wootten was treated and released from Doctors Hospital in Lanham yesterday morning after fainting at the D.C. Basketball Clinic he was operating at DeMatha.
Reached at his University Park home yesterday afternoon, Wootten said the fainting was the result of a recent change in the strength of the medicine Cardura that he has been taking for more than a year.
"They doubled my blood-pressure medicine and it was too much," said Wootten, 68, who had a life-saving liver transplant three years ago. "I'm fine--healthy as a horse."
Several hundred coaches were seated in the bleachers in DeMatha's gymnasium for the clinic, which began Friday night and continued yesterday beginning at 9 a.m.
At about 9:30 a.m., Wootten, the nation's all-time winningest high school boys basketball coach, was speaking to the group when he moved toward a padded wall and slowly collapsed onto his back, according to a local high school coach who attended the clinic.
"I got faint," Wootten said. "I felt a little woozy."
Several coaches gathered around Wootten, who apparently lost consciousness. Wootten said he was told by his son Joe that "for 30 seconds I seemed to be out of it."
Morgan Wootten remained on the floor for about 10 minutes until an ambulance arrived. He said he was at the hospital for about an hour, then returned to his home and ate lunch. He did not return to DeMatha for the rest of the clinic, which included talks by University of Connecticut Coach Jim Calhoun, University of North Carolina Coach Bill Guthridge and Michigan State Coach Tom Izzo.
Joe Wootten, a former assistant coach to his father who is entering his first season as the boys basketball coach at O'Connell, conducted the rest of the clinic, with help from DeMatha assistants Neal Murphy and Mike Jones.
Morgan Wootten said yesterday's events would not alter his daily routine, which includes walking two miles each day, and that he will be ready for his 44th season at DeMatha. In the spring, he had considered retiring to become an advisor to his son at O'Connell, but decided he would continue coaching.
Wootten has a career record of 1,185-178; his teams have won 14 City Title championships and 31 conference titles.
"I'm fine--it's no big deal," Wootten said. "My wife is going to make me do the dishes tonight. . . . Why worry? I know what caused it. I'll be at open gym next week."