The Student News Site of University of Arizona

The Daily Wildcat

84° Tucson, AZ

The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Replacing Archie

Mike Christy / Arizona Daily Wildcat

The Arizona Wildcats mens basketball team took on the Duke Blue Devils Thursday, March 24, 2011, in a NCAA West Regional game in the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The Wildcats advance to the Elite 8 with a 93-77 win.
Mike Christy
Mike Christy / Arizona Daily Wildcat The Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball team took on the Duke Blue Devils Thursday, March 24, 2011, in a NCAA West Regional game in the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The Wildcats advance to the Elite 8 with a 93-77 win.

An Elite Eight run and 30-win season, of all things, had a detrimental result for head coach Sean Miller’s basketball team.

In an offer former associate coach Archie Miller couldn’t refuse, Sean Miller’s little brother took the head coaching position at Atlantic 10 basketball power Univeristy of Dayton.

“”It’s a great fit for Arch,”” Sean Miller said. “”It’s bittersweet because we lost somebody who was really involved in every facet of our program. You don’t trust anyone more than you trust your own brother.””

Now, the Wildcats expect to take their time in replacing their strongest West Coast recruiter. A decision won’t be made until May, according to Sean Miller.

Among the traits of Archie Miller’s replacement, Sean Miller said he’s looking for someone exactly like his 32-year-old brother, an all-around recruiter, coach and leader. Whether that comes in the form of a former Arizona player — former guard and Memphis Grizzlies assistant coach Damon Stoudamire’s name has been thrown about — a West Coast guy or a former colleague, Sean Miller is uncertain.

“”He could help during the games, he was a very good practice coach,”” Sean Miller said. “”Because he left so quick and because of who he is in our program, I think it’s very important that whoever we hire is equally comprehensive in their ability to contribute.””

For Sean Miller, it’s been a whirlwind of a 24 months.

He felt like he won a huge battle when he pulled Archie Miller from the staff at Ohio State and its head coach, Thad Matta. In that span, the brothers acquired enough talent to turn a depleted roster into a 16-15 squad led by mostly freshmen, then the Elite Eight team of this year.

And as it turns out, Archie Miller only needed those 24 months to prove his worth as a college basketball coach.

“”We probably didn’t have the time to enjoy the fact that we are related,”” Sean Miller said. “”Our bond came more in trust and locking arms into doing the best we can at Arizona.””

On the bright side for the family, John Miller, the brothers’ father and a high school basketball coach from Pennsylvania, now has two sons acting as head coaches in the Division I ranks.

“”He combines the best of both worlds,”” Sean Miller said of his father. “”When he needs to get out of the gloom and doom of the winter of that area, he can come out here. When he doesn’t want to travel so much, he can go to Dayton.””

Williams taking time, Miller expects lockout

Sean Miller said forward Derrick Williams is still mulling over his option to leave for the 2011 NBA Draft.

His role is simply informing Williams and his family with as much as he can, and a key factor in the decision looms in the form of the likely NBA lockout for next season.

Though everyone has a different opinion on whether the NBA lockout would last one month or the whole season, Sean Miller said everyone he’s spoken with “”anticipates some form of a lockout.””

Mayes has stress fracture

Point guard Jordin Mayes has been placed in a protective boot for a stress fracture in his foot. Sean Miller said the injury was caught early and, had the Wildcats advanced to the Final Four, Mayes would have been able to play.

Mayes will have a recovery period a little over a month, Sean Miller said.

More to Discover
Activate Search