With the NBA Finals over, the site is going to shift back to more of a 50-50 split between the college and pro game (with some draft stuff sprinkled in over the next 2 weeks). For my first post on the college game in the last month, I wanted to share this terrific piece on Wes Miller, head coach at UNC-Greensboro. In April, Miller’s UNCG team made the program’s first NCAA Tournament trip since 2001 where they lost to 4-seed Gonzaga 68-64. Coming off the NCAA Tournament appearance (and a school-record 27 wins), UNCG rewarded Miller with a 7-year extension last month, but the article dives into the fact that it hasn’t always been smooth sailing during Miller’s tenure and that the Spartans’ recent success is a result of some struggles Miller had early in his career and a bout of self-realization. Great stuff in here on the importance of self-awareness as a coach, Miller’s philosophy on recruiting, and his relationship with his college coach Roy Williams.
“The last thing we’re trying to find, and it’s the most important if we can check those first two boxes, is we want tough, competitive dudes,” Miller says. “You have to have a DNA of winning when I watch you play. And if I don’t see that, we go in another direction. Sometimes we miss because of that. Sometimes a kid doesn’t show me he cares about winning the next possession and we misevaluate. Maybe he does have those characteristics, and he goes on to be a great player for someone else.”