Jerry Tarkanian -- one of the greatest college basketball coaches of all time -- has passed away at a Las Vegas hospital after battling a respiratory ailment ... this according to his son.
The 84-year-old -- aka "Tark the Shark" -- was first hospitalized Monday ... but his health took a serious turn for the worse and he ultimately passed away Wednesday morning.
Jerry's son Danny tweeted the news moments ago, "Coach Tark, my father, the greatest man I have ever known, passed today, to take his place in heaven. I will miss him every day of my life."
Tarkanian led UNLV to the NCAA national championship in 1990 ... and helped them reach the Final Four the following year.
Tark coached his teams to a 729-201 record in 31 years at the D1 level.