‘Coach Williams is the Greatest’: North Carolina Tar Heels New Coach Explains Why He Isn’t Under Pressure

Published 04/09/2021, 5:00 PM EDT


For the first time in 18 years, the North Carolina Tar Heels have a new head coach. The legendary Roy Williams has finally stepped down and has announced his retirement. His assistant, Hubert Davis, who worked under him for almost a decade, will take over as the new head coach.

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Taking over from someone who has won three national championships is a huge challenge. That could invite a lot of pressure, which often leads to the successors struggling. But it doesn’t bother Davis, who has a humble and sensible way to approach his new situation.

“I don’t feel pressure because I’m not comparing myself to anybody,” Davis said. “Coach Williams is the greatest. I’m Hubert.”

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“Yes, this job brings pressure. Yes, this job brings anxiety. But I played here, I played 12 years in the NBA, seven years with ESPN, always on TV on Game Day. It was nine years here as an assistant coach. And so all those experiences have prepared me to walk this path with humbleness, excitement, joyfulness and determination.”

So along with an approach that doesn’t involve comparing, plus a rich experience of both NBA and NCAA basketball, Davis looks like he is a man with a plan.

Looking at the legacy left by Roy Williams at North Carolina Tar Heels

Williams joined his hometown university, the University of North Carolina, in 1968. He played one season for them, before returning as an assistant coach a decade later. He worked under the legendary Dean Smith for 10 years, and was part of their 1982 triumph when Michael Jordan and James Worthy took them to the national title.

Williams then left in 1988 when he got the opportunity to take over at Kansas. He returned to his alma mater in 2003, after a 15 year tenure with the Jayhawks. In just his second season as the head of the Tar Heels, Williams led them to the 2005 NCAA tournament title, their first title since 1993.

Three seasons later, in 2008, they returned to the Final Four, but sadly couldn’t go beyond. With revenge on their mind, the Tar Heels beat the Michigan State Spartans in the final to win their second title under Williams.

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After being written off for many years, Williams and the Tar Heels returned with back to back Final Four appearances in 2016 and 2017, while winning it in the second year. With his third title as head coach, Williams cemented his legacy, making him one of the best of all-time.

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Aaron Mathew

1664 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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