Lavin releases statement on father's passing

St. John's coach Steve Lavin released a statement Tuesday evening regarding the death of his father, Albert "Cap" Lavin.

It is Lavin's first public comment since his father died over the weekend.

"We are grateful for the heartfelt encouragement, prayers and support received since our father's passing," Lavin said. "The thoughtful sentiments and caring messages we received via text, Twitter, e-mail and voicemail from friends, current players, former players, colleagues and college basketball fans have helped to give our family an emotional lift during a challenging time in our lives. Moving forward, it will now be the inspiring memories of my father that will serve as a catalyst to pursue better ways to navigate the 'bittersweet miracle that is life'."

Lavin left the team to be with his family in San Francisco on Sunday morning, a few hours before the Red Storm's 77-58 loss at Syracuse. His status for the team's next game, at No. 12 Louisville on Thursday, is still to be determined, per a university spokesman.