Georgia Tech has made its decision and has hired Damon “Mighty Mouse” Stoudamire.
Stoudamire played at Arizona for Lute Olson, as did his Georgia Tech predecessor Josh Pastner (Stoudamire graduated the year before Pastner arrived).
He had a productive NBA career with 13 years at just 5-10, which is impressive. He worked with Rice briefly and Arizona but most of his coaching career has been as an NBA assistant, most recently with the Boston Celtics.
It’s a somewhat puzzling hire though. Not to knock Stoudamire, but he has minimal college experience and former NBA players have been hit-or-miss as college coaches. Here’s a quick list:
- Patrick Ewing
- Chris Mullin
- Penny Hardaway
- Hubert Davis
- Jerry Stackhouse
- Juwan Howard
- Dan Majerle
- Clyde Drexler
- Fred Hoiberg
There aren’t many home runs in there (although there are UNC fans agitating to have Stackhouse replace Davis at UNC).
It’s interesting that both Stoudamire and Pastner learned from Arizona’s Lute Olson, who was a tremendous coach, but there’s just not a lot to go on with Stoudamire. We’ll have to see how he works out.
One hopes he makes two smart hires: first, a guy who has head coaching experience. We’d call someone like Mike Brey and hire him as essentially a consigliere because there’s a lot more to the job than simply practice, games and recruiting. A guy like that could cut your learning curve by a good bit. Then we’d look for a guy who knows how to recruit Georgia, South Carolina and Florida.
It could be either an inspired hire or a disaster. Time will tell.
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