CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia basketball legend Willie Akers, a former WVU standout and coach at Logan High School for whom the gym is named, is in Charleston Area Medical Center after a fall at the Charleston Civic Center on Wednesday.
Akers, who turns 76 in July, stumbled on the basketball floor at the Civic Center and was taken to CAMC General Division.
His son Chad said Wednesday afternoon that his father is in critical condition after fracturing his C6 cervical vertebrae and breaking his nose.
"He's on a ventilator right now, and a cut on his forehead, and the ventilator is helping him breathe," Chad said. "We're just waiting for the neurosurgeon to see what they'll do about the cervical fracture."
Chad said his father was sedated, yet coherent and is "agitated because he can't talk."
The older Akers guided the Logan High School boys basketball team to four Class AAA state championships and a 402-116 record during his tenure from 1962-83.
Prior to his coaching career, Akers was a two-time All-State selection at Mullens High School, helping his team win the Class AAA title in 1955. He went on to WVU where he played on three teams that combined for a 81-12 record and was a co-captain his senior season.
Charleston Civic Center Manager John Robertson, who is vacationing in California, said he's "terribly sorry to hear about" Akers' fall after being notified via telephone.
"Willie is a fine person and I hate for that to have happened," Robertson said.
Willie Akers is scheduled to be among the keynote speakers on March 12 during the 100th anniversary celebration of the State Basketball Tournament.
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Rich Stevens at richstev...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4837.