Report: Gonzaga's Tommy Lloyd to Be Hired as Arizona HC After Sean Miller Firing

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistApril 14, 2021

Gonzaga assistant coach Tommy Lloyd gestures to Northern Arizona players, coaches and staff after an NCAA college basketball game in Spokane, Wash., Monday, Dec. 28, 2020. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
Young Kwak/Associated Press

Tommy Lloyd will reportedly be the next head coach of the Arizona men's basketball team, according to Stadium's Jeff Goodman

The Wildcats had an opening after firing Sean Miller after 12 seasons with the program. The coach had one year remaining on his contract, but the team finished a disappointing 17-9 in 2020-21 and haven't participated in the NCAA tournament since a first-round loss in 2018.

The NCAA also levied five Level 1 charges against the school in March with the team self-imposing a postseason ban this year.

It could create a difficult rebuilding process for the new coach, as he tries to get the program back to elite status.

Arizona always expects to contend in the Pac-12 and has won one national championship with four Final Fours in its history, all under Lute Olson. Miller also guided the team to the Elite Eight three times during his time at the school.

The program has also developed its share of NBA talent, including in recent years with lottery picks Deandre Ayton, Aaron Gordon, Lauri Markkanen and Stanley Johnson coming through the system.

These factors will ensure Arizona remains a top destination for elite recruits, especially on the west coast.

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With young talent on the current roster, the tools are in place for a quick return to glory.

The pressure will be on Lloyd, who gets the job after 20 years as an assistant under Mark Few at Gonzaga.

Despite a lack of experience as a head coach, he has been a key part of the Bulldogs' success, including this year's team that won 31 straight games before losing in the national title game. It was the school's second trip to the Final Four in the last four tournaments.

Lloyd has especially been known for bringing international players to Gonzaga, including Domantas Sabonis, Rui Hachimura and Joel Ayayi.

The experience could be enough to help Arizona become a top contender nationally before too long.