Add news
Король и Шут - Девушка и граф (English/Japanese cover by Even Blurry Videos feat. ICHIGO TANUKI)
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010June 2010July 2010
August 2010
September 2010October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011March 2011April 2011May 2011June 2011July 2011August 2011September 2011October 2011November 2011December 2011January 2012February 2012March 2012April 2012May 2012June 2012July 2012August 2012September 2012October 2012November 2012December 2012January 2013February 2013March 2013April 2013May 2013June 2013July 2013August 2013September 2013October 2013November 2013December 2013January 2014February 2014March 2014April 2014May 2014June 2014July 2014August 2014September 2014October 2014November 2014December 2014January 2015February 2015March 2015April 2015May 2015June 2015July 2015August 2015September 2015October 2015November 2015December 2015January 2016February 2016March 2016April 2016May 2016June 2016July 2016August 2016September 2016October 2016November 2016December 2016January 2017February 2017March 2017April 2017May 2017June 2017July 2017August 2017September 2017October 2017November 2017December 2017January 2018February 2018March 2018April 2018May 2018June 2018July 2018August 2018September 2018October 2018November 2018December 2018January 2019February 2019March 2019April 2019May 2019June 2019July 2019August 2019September 2019October 2019November 2019December 2019January 2020February 2020March 2020April 2020May 2020June 2020July 2020August 2020September 2020October 2020November 2020December 2020January 2021February 2021March 2021April 2021
News Every Day |

Roy Williams: A Good Man, A Great Coach

North Carolina Head Coach Roy Williams Announces Retirement
CHAPEL HILL, NC - APRIL 01: Roy Williams, head basketball coach at the University of North Carolina, speaks during his retirement announcement at Dean E. Smith Center on April 1, 2021 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. | Photo by Jeffrey Camarati/Getty Images

We’ll miss Ol’ Roy

Duke fans have had a long relationship with Roy Williams. He took over Kansas after Larry Brown left the program in shambles in 1988 and had the Jayhawks in the title game in 1991, losing to the Blue Devils.

Duke and Kansas played a few times while he was coach with Duke winning three of those four games and also 18 of 22 ACC games against his Tar Heels.

After Dean Smith died, the Duke and UNC players took a knee in Cameron and led a moment of silence for the late UNC coach with Williams and Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski leading them. It was a sad but powerful moment.

Then they went out and tried to beat each other senseless, with Duke winning 92-90 in overtime, which was also a fitting tribute.

It’s probably fair to say that Duke fans have a love-hate relationship with Williams, which was compounded by the academic scandal that devastated UNC athletics in the previous decade. Given the intimacy of a basketball program, and how academic support works and the chain of command typically followed, it’s really hard to imagine that he had no idea what had happened.

For those who don’t know, every school keeps very close tabs on basketball players and academics because losing just one player can ruin a coach’s career. It’s a huge priority. You simply can’t afford to not know what’s going on because your own future could be affected.

Leaving that aside for the moment, we were touched by his comments at his press conference and his uncertainty about his accomplishments.

This reminded us of how we noticed his periodic jokes about suicide and how it took too long for that to register.

We’re not saying that we think he was going to kill himself or even thought about it but it hinted at a harsher side to his typically sunny public personality. We came to believe that for Williams, winning was also to some extent personal validation so losing wounded him more than it might most coaches.

When you see that side of someone, jokes aren’t really fun or funny anymore so we stopped making them.

In his Thursday comments, Williams essentially said that despite his massive success, he was never sure he was good enough. Gary Parrish told a story on his podcast today of seeing Williams scouting 15-year-olds at an AAU event, the only major head coach to do so, and asking why.

Williams said that he knew he could win with great players but wasn’t sure he could win without them.

Again, a view into the self-doubt that both motivated and terrified him.

Williams also said this Thursday: “The last two years have been really hard… I felt that I made mistakes. … I just never got the team this year where I wanted them to go. I didn’t get it done. … I didn’t push the right buttons. … I just don’t feel I’m the right man any longer.”

The self-doubt is nothing new. It’s just become harder to escape the last couple of years.

This is probably not uncommon for children of alcoholics (in his case, his dad) and that may also explain Williams’ bond with Dean Smith, who was a willing father figure for anyone in his circle. Smith believed in Williams, saw his immense potential and was responsible for him getting the Kansas job despite no head coaching experience.

Williams never forgot everything that Smith did for him and we’ve never heard him call him anything other than Coach Smith.

He has obviously suffered a lot lately with a dreadful season last year and now going out in the first round of the NCAA tournament this March and feeling like he can no longer motivate his players.

A lot of that is probably the self-doubt creeping through again. He had one bad year in his entire career, last year, and this year? Who could make sense out of this year? Virtually everyone struggled at some point.

We hope that as time goes by he gets a better sense of what he accomplished and focuses less on the last two years than on decades of building relationships with players and families.

Williams is a compelling character in many ways, at times corny, other times ornery.

Who can forget when he said, after being asked about the UNC job after Kansas lost in the tournament “I don't give shit about North Carolina right now.” Nationwide, on CBS.

Yet when he’s out of the spotlight, and often when he’s in it, he’s very kind. We’ve seen many stories today about how he reached out to people to help them even when he didn’t know them at all.

Many of you have seen Ted Lasso, the superb show on Apple TV+. You may not know though that star Jason Sudeikis is a basketball guy who grew up in Kansas. The iconic jumping scene in the show’s first episode (we think) is explicitly based on Roy Williams celebrating a win with his team. Williams is, we think, a major inspiration behind Lasso who is relentlessly kind and decent to everyone he meets.

We don’t know if Williams is quite that good - former Heels Rashad McCants and Ty Lawson have suggested that they don't think so - but who’s perfect? We think that side of Williams is utterly sincere and without guile. When you get past the competitive stuff, he’s a really good, humble guy.

He spoke - again with the self-doubt - of being terrified of what comes next, that he might not be good at whatever he does now.

We can understand the self-doubt, but people who have watched him understand that the same doubts and uncertainties about himself have driven him his entire life and have propelled him to greatness.

On the one hand, we know that will continue to push him. On the other, we hope that he can slow down now, reflect, and realize that he’s a good man who has done extraordinary things and had immensely positive effects on more people than he could every possibly realize.

When you look back and weigh your life, there’s nothing much more worthwhile than that.

We’d like to call on all Duke fans to join us in wishing Williams well as he heads into retirement.

Read also

Uber and Lyft are desperate for drivers. Here's what drivers say is keeping them off the road

MSE Equity Price Index slips on low volumes

US says there have been positive talks with Iran, but 'long road ahead' before deal

News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here
News Every Day

Danis confident he could beat ‘one-pump chump’ Ngannou in street fight