Former Villanova Wildcats Star Explains Why Coach Jay Wright Will Never Leave for the NBA

Published 05/28/2021, 1:16 PM EDT
Mar 27, 2021; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Villanova Wildcats head coach Jay Wright talks to forward Jermaine Samuels (23) in the second half against the Baylor Bears during the Sweet 16 of the 2021 NCAA Tournament at Hinkle Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Doug McSchooler-USA TODAY Sports


Many coaches in the NBA have used the NCAA as a platform to jump to the big league. But there are also many coaches who stay in the NCAA for decades and form a lifelong relationship with colleges. Entering his 21st season with the Villanova Wildcats, head coach Jay Wright belongs to the latter.

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After starting his career with Hofstra back in 1994, Wright got the Villanova job seven years later. And since then, he has stayed put. He repaid the faith and patience showed by the college and has brought them two national championships too. Along with that, he has a ton of other personal and team accolades on his resume too.

So with him winning everything possible in the NCAA, is it time for him to enter the NBA? Former Wildcat Jalen Brunson doesn’t think so. During a recent interview, he explained how this move is likely to never happen.

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He said, “I don’t think he ever will. I think he could. Him coaching with team USA has opened his eyes little bit. Like this is pretty interesting, playing with the top guys in the league. But I don’t think he ever will. He has everything he wants. It goes Father Peter, our president at Villanova at number and it’s Jay Wright next. He’s built a culture that’s unmatched.”

NBA executives believe Villanova Wildcats’ Jay Wright is ready for the job

According to a survey featuring anonymous executives from the NBA, Wright ranked number one among NCAA coaches who are the most ready for NBA.

One executive said, “I’m not sure he leaves for anything except for the Sixers job, but obviously he’s proven he can really coach and develop young guys. Look at what he has done over the years with guys like Josh Hart, Ryan Arcidiacono, Jalen Brunson. He gets guys ready, and that’s important.”

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He was one of the favorites to get the 76ers job when they were looking for candidates to replace Brett Brown. But Wright rejected a chance to coach his hometown NBA team to continue his legacy with the Wildcats. With over two decades spent at Villanova, Wright is already the best coach they have ever had and will go down as one of the best in NCAA history too.

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Aaron Mathew

1629 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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