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Southern Miss head coach Jay Ladner hospitalized after ‘heart-related medical emergency’

Ladner, 58, is in his fifth season with the Golden Eagles

Jay Ladner is expected to make a full recovery, but it’s unclear when he’ll be able to rejoin the program.
Jay Ladner is expected to make a full recovery, but it’s unclear when he’ll be able to rejoin the program. (Michael C. Johnson/USA Today) (USA TODAY Sports / Reuters)

Southern Mississippi men's basketball head coach Jay Ladner was hospitalized Tuesday after he experienced a “heart-related medical emergency,” the school announced.

Ladner was taken to a hospital in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, on Tuesday morning. He is expected to make a full recovery, the team said, but it’s unclear when he will rejoin the program.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Jay and his family as he works to make a full recovery," Southern Miss athletic director Jeremy McClain said in a statement. "We will continue to support our coaches and student-athletes at the highest level while he is away from the team."

Associate head coach Juan Cardona will take over as the team’s interim head coach in Ladner’s absence. The team will take on Old Dominion on Wednesday night.

Ladner, 58, is in his fifth season at Southern Miss — which marks his second head coaching job in college basketball after a five-year run at Southeastern Louisiana. The Golden Eagles went 25-8 last year and won the Sun Belt in their first season in the conference after making the jump from Conference USA.

The Golden Eagles have lost three straight games headed into Wednesday’s contest against Old Dominion. They hold a 12-11 record, and sit in sixth in the Sun Belt standings. Old Dominion head coach Jeff Jones is also away from his team after he experienced a heart attack before the Diamond Head Classic last fall. He announced in January that he’d miss the rest of the season to undergo prostate cancer treatments, something he’d been diagnosed with twice before. The Monarchs are just 6-17 headed into Wednesday’s game.