Roy Williams, North Carolina, Retirement, UNC
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Update as of April 5

For the last nine years, Hubert Davis has been Roy Williams’ assistant coach. Less than a week after Willaims announced his retirement, Davis has agreed in principle to become the next head coach to replace Williams.

Davis will be the program’s first-ever Black head coach.

Davis is a Tar Heel alum who played for then-coach Dean Smith from 1988-1992 which was followed by an NBA career.

Initial story

For the past 33 seasons, Roy Williams has been a head coach. Today, the North Carolina Tar Heels coach announced he is stepping away and retiring. His announcement this morning — which happens to be April Fool’s Day — came off as a joke to many but Williams is far from joking.

The Tar Heels have been led by Williams for the past 18 seasons. During that time, he has compiled an overall record of 485-163 which includes national titles in 2005, 2009, and 2017. In addition, he also was the head coach at Kansas for 15 seasons (418-101 overall record).

“Everybody wants to know the reason and the reason is very simple. Every time somebody asked me how long I was going to go, I’d always say, As long as my health allows me to do it.’ I love coaching, working the kids on the court, the locker room, the trips, the ‘Jump Around’ (pregame) music, the trying to build a team,” Williams said. “I will always love that. And I’m scared to death of the next phase. But I no longer feel that I’m the right man,” Williams stated at his press conference.

Among Division I men’s coaches, Williams is fourth all-time with wins with 903-264 record which is a 0.774 winning percentage. Furthermore, he is the only NCAA coach to post 400 wins at two different universities. His superstar career also includes being inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.

Mike Krzyzewski, Duke’s head coach and the Tar Heels rival, was surprised when he heard that Williams is retiring.

“College basketball is losing one of its greatest coaches and a man who genuinely cares about the game of basketball, and more importantly, the people who play it,” Krzyzewski expressed. “Roy has led two iconic programs as a head coach and did so in exemplary fashion. I have the utmost respect for Roy and his family, who represented themselves and their institutions with class, grace, and humility. While we were on opposite sides of college basketball’s greatest rivalry, we both understood how lucky we were to be part of it and always tried to represent it in the way it deserved. Personally, I will miss competing against him, seeing him at coaches’ meetings, and having the opportunity to discuss how to make our game even better.


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