Where Does UNC Tarheels' Roy Williams Rank Among Elite Coaches?

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Where Does UNC Tarheels' Roy Williams Rank Among Elite Coaches?
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Rewind to April 7, 2003.  The Syracuse Orangemen, led by Carmelo Anthony, celebrated at half-court as the Kansas Jayhawks dejectedly walked off the court.

Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim was basking in the glory of his first national title.  Longtime Kansas coach Roy Williams was searching for answers after falling short in his fourth Final Four.

Williams had led the Jayhawks to the NCAA tournament every year since 1990 and to the Final Four in 1991, 1993, 2002, and 2003.  His team had captured either the regular season or tournament conference title in 10 of his 14 seasons at Kansas.

Yet there was still a hole in Williams' resume. 

Despite all of his success, he had never won a national title.

There were grumblings around Lawrence, KS and whispers around the country that Roy Williams was good enough to lead a team to the Final Four but could never win it all.

What a difference six years makes.

The national title game was Williams' last on the Jayhawk sideline.  He was hired by North Carolina to clean up the Matt Doherty mess and restore the Tarheels to glory.

In just his second season at Chapel Hill, with a roster loaded with NBA talent, Williams got the proverbial monkey off of his back.  His North Carolina Tarheels defeated the Deron Wiliams-led Illinois Fighting Illini to capture the 2005 national title.

On April 1, 2007, after ammassing over 500 victories, 17 straight NCAA tournament appearances, five Final Fours, multiple Coach of the Year awards, and one elusive national title, Roy Wiliams was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Since then, Williams has led his Tarheels to his sixth and seventh Final Fours.  On Monday night, he won his second national title.

Now the voices aren't whispering whether or not he can win a national title.  They are wondering how many more titles he can bring to Carolina.

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