Gary Williams to Announce Retirement: 5 Possible Replacements for Maryland
After 22 seasons at the top of his game, Gary Williams is making it official today by announcing his retirement from the head coaching position at the University of Maryland—his alma mater.
A Jersey guy by birth, Williams became the figurehead of Terps basketball after taking the reigns at Maryland in 1989, just three years after the tragic death of legendary Terrapin, Len Bias.
After coaching the Terps to the Final Four in 2001, Williams led his squad to the promise land the very next year, bringing home the NCAA Championship in 2002.
Although Gary Williams has done more than enough to save his spot in College Park history, the show must go on, and here are five coaching options the Terps might pursue this summer.
1. Mike Brey
Mike Brey would be an interesting candidate to lead the Terps since he would come loaded with Maryland-area connections.
A native of nearby Bethesda, Md., Brey played and coached for the legendary Morgan Wootten of local and national powerhouse DeMatha High School. He is also a graduate of the George Washington University, just a short Metro ride from the University of Maryland.
Brey has an impressive resume to boast, leading Notre Dame to a 27-7 season last year. He's made coaching stops along the way at Duke and Delaware as well.
2. Shaka Smart
America fell in love this past March with the story of Shaka Smart and his VCU Rams.
After leading VCU to an improbable Final Four trip this year, Smart has become one of the hottest coaches in the NCAA, reportedly turning down a few offers from larger institutions in order to stay at Virginia Commonwealth.
But is it possible that a school as big as Maryland, full of ACC lore and not far from his current job, could sway Smart to College Park?
3. Jamie Dixon
Jamie Dixon has led the Pittsburgh Panthers to a 216-60 record since taking the reigns of this Big East school in 2003.
While the Big East is what's hot these days, basketball in Pittsburgh just isn't the same as basketball in Maryland. Despite his success at Pitt, Maryland would be exactly the type of prestige booster which Dixon would need to be considered amongst the elite coaches in the college game.
Dixon is a strong recruiter in both the Maryland and Washington, D.C. areas, something the Terps might consider to be vital.
4. Jay Wright
I've read on a few blogs that Jay Wright would make a good candidate for the Maryland job, but I'm not so sure about that.
Wright has worked very hard to bring Villanova basketball back from the doldrums and has become the figurehead for its program. I'm not positive the job at Maryland would be enough to pry Wright away from his throne in the Philly suburbs.
5. Sean Miller
Sean Miller has bounced around a little bit these past few seasons, already leaving Xavier for that big job promotion in Arizona.
But Miller is an ACC guy. He spent five years as an assistant at NC State and may be looking to get back in the mix after a successful Elite Eight run last year.