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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Legendary Gary Williams Never Stops Teaching Basketball

Gary Williams is known in coaches circle as a brilliant strategist and motivator. Even though the role of the head coach in college basketball has evolved more from simply a disciplinarian/strategist to public realtions strategist/recruiter. Now more than ever the head coach is expected to be more than an X and O guy because he must be able to do all the other things that come with the job. Recent failures in this department include Billy Gillispie at Kentucky who is a terrific basketball coach, but in over his head with the total obligation required from UK's coach. John Calipari from Memphis is almost the total opposite in that he uses every opportunity on camera to recruit and sell his program. Earlier this season, Williams was in trouble with his athletic department and later was supported by them, but he is at his best with his back to the wall and who can argue that he hasnt done a magnificent job with his team? "Coach Williams worked so hard this year for us," forward Dave Neal said. "He knew that we could be a good team, and he did everything in his will to make this team as good as it could be. I think he really brought the best out of every one of his players," the lone senior and the one Williams credits for keeping the players together. "Everyone gave him everything. We were playing hard for him."

With less than 60 seconds to play and Duke inbounding the ball near Maryland's bench. Williams stood just a few feet away from where the play would begin, his eyes and attention focused on Landon Milbourne, who was guarding the inbound passer.

"Move! Move! Move, Landon! Move!" Williams screamed, his face turning redder than his necktie.The Terps' chances of winning were slipping away, but Williams was still teaching. He wasn't ready to stop. He knew he had more coaching to do. He has always known, in fact.

And now everyone else knows that, too.

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