In beating Syracuse, Roy Williams won his 800th career game as a college basketball head coach. He also became the second fastest to get to the mark. Though he has his critics, 800 is a lot of wins. Lets look back at some of them.
#1: November 25, 1988 - Kansas 94, Alaska-Anchorage 81
Roy began his career with a win in the Great Alaska Shootout. Kansas started the 88-89 season 13-1, but ended 19-12. It was just one of two seasons where one of Williams’ teams won less than 20 games in a season.
#65: March 23, 1991 - Kansas 93, Arkansas 81
In just his third season as a head coach, Williams and Kansas beat Arkansas to make his first Final Four. His Jayhawk team would make the Championship game, beating the Tar Heels along the way of course, before eventually falling to Duke. It wouldn’t be long before he got back to the Final Four.
#100: March 13, 1992 - Kansas 84, Colorado 66
Williams recorded his 100th win in the first round of the Big Eight tournament in 1992. He had already been to a title game in his short career, but the ‘92 season ended in a upset loss in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The reputation that he wasn’t able to win the big one would unfortunately follow him around for while.
#200: January 27, 1996 - Kansas 88, Nebraska 73
His 200th win came in a road game at Nebraska. The 95-96 season was Williams’ eighth, and it would be the fifth where they finished first or tied for first in the Big Eight.
#300: February 20, 1999 - Kansas 60, Oklahoma 50
Just three years late, Williams’ 300th career win came near the end of his 11th season as a head coach. His ‘97 and ‘98 Kansas teams were among his best, allowing him to rack up 100 wins in such a short time. However both came up short in the tournament.
#400: January 15, 2003 - Kansas 98, Wyoming 70
His 400th career win came in his final season as head coach at Kansas. The season would end in Williams’ second career loss in a NCAA Tournament Championship game. After famously not taking the Carolina job in 2000, Roy would come home in 2003.
#470: April 4, 2005 - North Carolina 75, Illinois 70
In his second season at the helm of North Carolina, Williams and the Tar Heels won his first National Championship. It was the schools’ first championships post-Dean Smith, and allowed Williams to shed his reputation as the best coach to have never won the big one.
#500: December 9, 2006 - North Carolina 94, High Point 69
In beating High Point early in his fourth season in Chapel Hill, Williams became the fastest coach to 500 wins.
#594: April 6, 2009 - North Carolina 98, Michigan State 72
Williams’ second career National Championship came in a wire-to-wire win against Michigan State in Detroit. The 2009 teams will go down as one of the best in North Carolina and college basketball history.
#600: November 29, 2009 - North Carolina 80, Nevada 73
Just three seasons after winning #500, Williams picked up another 100 wins to reach another milestone. However, that season would be just the second time a Williams’ coached team would miss the NCAA Tournament. The 2009-10 season is probably Williams’ worst. The fact that a career worst year for him was a 20-17 record is a testament to the success he’s had in his career.
#700: March 22, 2013 - North Carolina 78, Villanova 71
In the first round of the NCAA Tournament the Tar Heels beat Villanova for Williams’ 700th career win. Not only was it a milestone win, but it also kept his undefeated record in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in tact, which is another impressive feat Roy has maintained. It was also the last time UNC played Villanova, which cannot be proven wrong.
#800: January 16, 2017 - North Carolina 85, Syracuse 68
The win on Monday against Syracuse was #17 on the season for the Tar Heels, which Roy said was the only important thing. (Typically Roy.) North Carolina is a top ten team, and Williams has a chance to make his ninth Final Four and maybe even win his third National Championship. 29 years into his career, Roy Williams is still winning games.