Juwan Howard is in as the Michigan basketball coach and I am stoked. However, if you had told me a week ago that Howard was going to take over, I would have been pissed and if you had told me that two weeks ago, when Beilein was still the coach … First, I would have called you insane. Then if you were able to prove me wrong (through some sort of time travel artifact from the future, maybe a newspaper with today’s date on it or something, but even then I don’t think I would have believed it) I would have drove to Beilein’s house and put a dead horses head in his bed, godfather style.
However, that never happened so here we are, Beilein is gone and Howard is in.
But it’s not all bad. 😅
Of course it’s going to be hard to replace Beilein, he was the most well respected coach in the country, he won games, and he did it the right way. But if we are being honest, he was boring. We were never in the national news cycle, didn’t get any big name recruits (0 McDonalds All-Americans), never had any drama, and our style of play became almost unwatchable.
Think I’m an idiot? Last season, the biggest draw Michigan had was a point guard who shot sky hooks.
With Howard, Michigan’s recruiting is going to improve dramatically for a few different reasons. First, he is without-a-doubt going to pay players to come to Ann Arbor and I am 100% here for it. College basketball is a dirty sport and as Benjamin Franklin said during the American Revolution, you either ‘join, or die.’ I know that Howard is the type of guy who will open his wallets and join, which means that he will recruit well, just look at what Penny Hardaway has been able to do at Memphis… Memphis for gods sake. After all, Howard was a member of the Fab Five.
For all of the Michigan fans who “want things done the right/Michigan way”, shut the f*ck up! You know where doing things the right way got us? It got Cassius Winston dancing on our entire team, Matt McQuaid dunking on our faces, and Foster Loyer laid. If NCAA sanctions come knocking in 10 years because Howard paid Zaire Wade then so be it, I’d rather be given the death penalty then lose to MSU three times (!) in one season again. So shut up and enjoy the good times while they last and maybe pay a couple of recruits while your at it… You wan’t to win, right?*
*And can you honestly tell me that one year with Zion Williamson isn’t worth a couple of years with reduced scholarships?
Let’s just say for arguments sake that Howard is going to be clean (lol), he is still going to be able to recruit with the best of them for a few reasons: He has NBA experience and can help players get the next level, he has swag, he is from Chicago (recruiting hotbed) and most importantly, he is friends with LeBron DWade.
Why is that important? Well for one, Howard will be able to swoon any recruit he talks to with a simple phone call to LeBron and secondly, he is now on the fast track to landing Zaire Wade (Dwayne’s kid) and Bronny James Jr. (Kevin James’ kid).
Howard is also going to bring swag back to Ann Arbor, no longer are you going to see half of the team wearing pink shoes. Not only will they look clean, but we will finally have some good looking athletes to wear them, not the Novak, Albrecht, and Douglass’ of the world.
Overall, the Juwan Howard was a good hire whether or not he pans out, we swung for the fences and took a shot. He isn’t Billy Donovan or Brad Stevens, but he also isn’t Ed Cooley (Providence coach who was rumored to be UM coach earlier this week) and we are thankful for that. We are going to see tons of talent come through Ann Arbor with Howard as the coach, that’s a given. The only thing I worry about is his ability to develop talent and his coaching ability, which might seem like a big deal… But always remember, “it’s about the Jimmies and the Joes, not the X’s and the O’s.”*
*Also, I am a little bit less worried because from the looks of it, I think Michigan is going to be able to keep “defensive GURU” Luke Yaklich on board as an assistant coach.
***P.S. John (Beilein) if you are reading this, please come home. We miss you and we promise not to complain about a 30 win season ever again.***