banner
Jeff Gravley

Good Gary, Bad Gary

Posted May 5, 2011
Updated May 6, 2011

The sudden retirement of Gary Williams leaves a divot in the ACC and college basketball. Only Mike Krzyzewski and Dean Smith won more ACC games than Williams did.

He inherited a once proud program at Maryland that was in shambles after a bad hire of high school coach Bob Wade. The Terps were also still trying to recover from the cocaine death of star Len Bias after he was drafted by the Boston Celtics.

Gary Williams went to work repairing his alma mater bringing a national championship to College Park in 2002 and winning 3 ACC titles. 

The guy can flat coach basketball but some of his on-court antics went too far. A friend of mine told me of an ACC tournament about 10 years ago when he was sitting behind the Maryland bench with his son. The Terps were getting whipped and Gary Williams was spraying profanities after every other play.

Embarrassed for his son, my friend had heard enough. After one of Williams' "F-bomb" tirades my friend stood up and shouted, "Hey Gary, watch the language. I have a young son sitting here." To which Gary replied, "F your son!!" The ACC heard about that one and so did Gary Williams.

But I also remember how engaging Williams was on those practice days at the ACC tournament. He would stand in the hallway surrounded by media telling great stories. Laughing and joking, Williams had so many stories to share.

I hope he finally gets into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. In early April, his former boss, NC State AD Debbie Yow, told me she nominated Williams for the Hall and suggested that the floor at the Comcast Center bear his name.

Gary Williams rubbed some the wrong way but he always wanted what was best for his sport.

His departure is not one of those good things for college basketball.

25 Comments

Please to add a comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • dtd1961 May 8, 2011

    Yow made him step down. I was waiting 4 NC State & MD 2 see Yow would punch him n the nose.

  • lmartin152 May 7, 2011

    ^Rdi73162

    Gary Williams better than Everett Case? Norm Sloan? Jim Valvano? Wow. Okay, if you say so.... (as eyes are rolling).

  • VT1994Hokie May 7, 2011

    Highly interesting article. I hate to read that he said this to a father/child. And, he should have given an autograph too. He is one of the most intense coaches that I have ever seen. He won. Regardless, he did a solid job up there. 3rd in the ACC is pretty impressive.

  • jmoore27540 May 7, 2011

    View quoted thread



    Your ignorance is comedy gold. Please continue.

  • duane11 May 6, 2011

    hows that??..Norm Sloan won a NT, as did V...and they had success other than those single yrs....other than just plain coaching at md longer(which would explain the higher total numbers of victories in acc play) than the aforementioned coache as at State, how was he 'better'?...for one thing, he never had an undefeated season.....do tell

  • gsms69 May 6, 2011

    My memories of him go back to Greensboro at the MD shoot around before an ACC tournament game, when a young girl in a wheelchair asked him for an autograph, on his way to the floor. He looked at her saying, "I don't have time." He should have made the time.

  • Rdi73162 May 6, 2011

    considering he was a better coach than state has "ever" had, what word describes the wolfies HC`s?

  • jmoore27540 May 6, 2011

    Generally speaking they dont curse the fans.....

  • tarheelgrad1998 May 6, 2011

    Really? There are coaches who curse when they get fired up??? No way...

  • Shelley Cooper May 6, 2011

    View quoted thread

More...

 

 

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Today at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NASCAR: Toyota Owner's 400

    Tonight at 7:00 on FOX50

  • NASL: RailHawks at Indy Eleven

    Tonight at 7:30 on WRAL-2

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MLB: NY Yankees at NY Mets

    Today at 4:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NASL: RailHawks at Indy Eleven

    Tonight at 7:30 on 99.9 HD3 The Ticket

  • CBSB: Duke vs. Virginia Tech

    Tomorrow at 1:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
GWI
 
4th
DET 3
CLE 1
 
1:10pm Today
CIN 0
CHC 0
2:10pm Today
CWS 0
KAN 0
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
4:05pm Today
NYY
NYM
4:10pm Today
MIA
WAS
6:10pm Tonight
TAM
TOR
7:05pm Tonight
PHI
ATL
7:05pm Tonight
BAL
BOS
7:10pm Tonight
MIL
STL
8:10pm Tonight
ARI
PIT
8:10pm Tonight
COL
SFG
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
LOS
9:05pm Tonight
ANA
TEX
9:10pm Tonight
SEA
MIN
3:00pm Today
BRK
ATL
5:30pm Tonight
MIL
CHI
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
GSW
10:30pm Tonight
POR
MEM
3:00pm Today
NYI
WAS
6:00pm Tonight
TAM
DET
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
NAS
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
VAN
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
GWI