Newton ushered Crimson Tide basketball into the modern era with the program's first two NCAA Tournament appearances in 1975 and 1976 along with winning three SEC titles in a row from 1974-1976.

His greatest legacy came off the court as he signed the first African-American scholarship player in the history of Alabama athletics in Wendell Hudson.

During his playing days in Tuscaloosa from 1969-1973, Hudson led the SEC in rebounding in 1972 and led the conference in scoring in 1973.

Following C.M. Netwon's passing, Hudson offered his well wishes for his former coach on The Gary Harris Show.

In his conversation with Gary Harris, the former Alabama basketball star discusses his relationship with Newton, the circumstances surrounding his recruitment to Alabama, CM Netwon the person and the iconic stature that the legendary coach possessed in the basketball world.

In the late 1960s, the state of Alabama was in a stage of transition from going through the struggle of the Civil Rights movement to the eventual entry of minority student-athletes on campus.

Hudson recalled the reassurance that Newton gave his mother about coming to play basketball at Alabama.

"One of the first things that CM told us in the recruiting process and he told my mom. He said, 'I don't know all the things he's going to go through being the first African-American to be on scholarship at Alabama, but what I promise you is that I'll do everything in my power to take care of him.' And Gary, that's what he did." Hudson said.

Later in the conversation, Hudson relayed how Newton's influence spread across the college basketball world including his own stint as the head women's basketball coach at Alabama.

Catch The Gary Harris Show every weekday from 9-11 AM on Tide 102.9/100.9 and the Tide 102.9 app.

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