If you caught the comments in yesterday's post, you'll have already seen what had a lot of folks around the basketball program annoyed. CBS surveyed 100 coaches on a range of topics, and announced that 23 of them think Roy Williams is the most overrated coach in college basketball. It's rather laughable, but I'm interested in the window it opens into the mind of coaches. The ones that answer surveys anyway.
As the article authors point out, the coaches surveyed overemphasized game day coaching with this question, and underplayed recruiting. And to be fair, the two things you most often see Roy Williams criticized for by Carolina fans are his failure to make halftime adjustments and his teams' spotty performance in late-game situations. Of course, recruiting is a huge part of the college game, and although the name on the front of the jersey can get you in the door, any coach still has to do a tremendous amount of work to land top talent. And Roy Williams does that part of the job better than anyone.
The other insight, as this article mentions, is that coaches admire certain defensive styles and a type of play different than that of Williams. Not every coach has come around to the concept of possession stats, and ding the Tar Heels for allowing a lot of points while ignoring the number of trips down the court.
. And frankly? Good. I want opposing coaches as dumb as possible. I want them thinking the Heels are all talent and no polish, that they don't improve an iota in Chapel Hill. Never mind that "can only recruit" Williams won his first national championship with someone else's players, or that Kansas was in shambles and on probation when he arrived. I'd rather he be underestimated, and I think Williams feels the same way. Notice his aw shucks reaction in the original article to rather silly question "Why do you recruit so hard?" He downplays his skills and acts like it's a desperate need. I doubt that's what he tells high school students in their living rooms, and I'm certain that's not what he yells at practice. And it works. It annoys the media, and sometimes even the fans, but it works.
So let the haters hate; I'll take any advantage the Heels can get. After all, the same charges were levied at Dean Smith for decades, and now he's a legend, and a reason diminish Roy Williams' accomplishments. I'll take the wins over the professional esteem any day of the week,
Steve Lavin and Jay Wright though? Waaaaay overrated.