Maybe I should just declare this “Caulton Tudor Week” on the blog.
Tudor discusses how Roy was once a virtual unknown toiling at the very bottom of the totem poll in the UNC basketball world before working his way up to where he is now, Hall of Fame coach who just had his contract extended until 2015 at the same school he graduated from and received his first college coaching job.
Wearing subdued neckties and three-piece suits with flare-bottom slacks, then-seniors Randy Wiel, Dudley Bradley and Ged Doughton graced the cover of the 1978-79 North Carolina basketball media guide.
Inside, on page 26, there’s a small photograph of a 28-year-old coaching staff rookie. The Carolina sports publicity department, to its credit, was able to put together four paragraphs of information on Roy Williams.
That biographical sketch was half the size of the adjacent photo. It’s mentioned that Williams, a 1972 UNC grad, had been a member of the 1968-69 freshman team, had coached at Owen High near Asheville for five seasons and that he and wife Wanda were parents of a son, Scott.
Needless to say Roy did pretty well for himself going from there to here. Of course this leads into one of the more popular topics found from time to time on message boards and that is the attempt to identify which former Tar Heel will succeed Roy in 10-12 years when I am guess he will hang it up and head to the golf course. There is no right answer to that question because it is very difficult to know who will be in a position a decade from now with the right experience and skill as a coach to take over one of the more storied programs in college basketball. It could be some guy who has two paragraphs in right now in some media guide or it could be Jarod Haase. You have a better chance of hitting the Powerball than you do guessing who the next great coach at UNC will be.
On a different note, I called Tudor out earlier in the week for applying his own version of history in implying Matt Doherty was forced out an UNC because he failed to win games. I noticed at one point in this article Tudor engages in more revisionist history as it pertains to Dean Smith’s ejection from the 1991 National Semifinal against Kansas:
It took Williams only three years to arrange that. On March 30, 1991, in Indianapolis, his team whipped the Tar Heels in the semifinals before losing to Duke in the national championship game.
That was a weekend of emotional extremes for Williams. Smith lost his temper near the end of the game and was ejected with a few seconds remaining. But before leaving the playing area, Smith went to the Kansas bench, embraced Williams and congratulated each Jayhawk.
Dean Smith was not ejected for losing his temper. From the Washington Post write-up of the game:
The second one was indisputable, according to NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee Chairman Jim Delany and NCAA officiating coordinator Hank Nichols.
It came after senior forward Rick Fox was called for a disqualifying fifth foul. Smith said he left the coaching box to walk a substitute to the scorer’s table and buy time for his team.
The coaching box is a designated area along the sideline that coaches are not supposed to leave except to break up a fight, or to seek information from the scorer or timer during a timeout or intermission. The penalty for leaving the box otherwise is a technical foul.
But Smith contended that in a dead-ball situation — here, the break in play caused by Fox fouling out — he is entitled to leave the box. Pavia differed, and was backed up by Delany and Nichols.
Not to rehash this incident 16 years after the fact but everyone knows coaches have been leaving the box as long as there has been a box and unless they do so in an egregious manner during the course of live action it does not result in a technical foul. It was a bad call and it also goes to prove that Tudor’s recollection of the event is spotty or he got Dean confused with Bill Guthridge who went absolutely bonkers and allegedly confronted referee Pete Pavia in the tunnel after the game and had to be restrained.
But if remembering it that way fits your view of the world Caulton, who am I to dispute it.