As you may or may not be aware, the Arizona Wildcats have officially parted ways with Sean Miller. The combination of the FBI sting, the NCAA investigation, and a lack of recent success just made it too much to handle.
10-15 years ago, we would’ve been hearing Mark Few as a theoretical candidate for Arizona to pursue. We are long past that point, which is why, as Gonzaga fans, we need to brace ourselves for the Tommy Lloyd rumors.
As the rumors go, Arizona is fond of Tommy Lloyd, and honestly, why wouldn’t they be? He is the pre-eminent international recruiter in all of college basketball and is one of the prime reasons the Zags are where they are today.
That said, Tommy Lloyd also doesn’t have a single day of head coaching experience. Although Arizona has a rather nice looking roster for next season, there is no guarantee those players stay after Miller’s departure, and it isn’t as if the turmoil at Arizona is completely over quite yet.
Another prime candidate comes in fellow WCC coach and Arizona alum Damon Stoudamire. Stoudamire has done a nice job of turning Pacific around in five years. His name will be appearing alongside Lloyd’s in virtually every hypothetical coaching post.
Although Tommy Lloyd is roundly expected to be the heir-in-waiting to the Gonzaga coaching throne, Mark Few is only 58 years old. It is a legitimate, and real question, if Tommy Lloyd is willing to wait the potential decade-plus it would take to become the Gonzaga head coach. Lloyd is currently 46 years old. Does he want his first head coaching job to come when he is nearing 60?
As always, it is incredibly early in the process for one of the more high profile coaching gigs in college basketball. Right now, it is just wait and see.
Update from Mike Roth:
And one more from Roth:— Jim Meehan (@SRJimm) April 7, 2021
“We’ll continue to do our best to let (Lloyd) know this is where we want him to be a head coach someday when the time comes and we want him between now and then to help us be one of, if not the best basketball programs in the country.”