Former Toronto Raptors assistant and Raptors 905 head coach Jerry Stackhouse just got one step closer to a potential dream job, as North Carolina head coach Roy Williams officially announced his retirement from coaching at 70 years old.
Williams, a UNC alum who spent 10 years as a Tar Heel assistant, 15 years at Kansas, and 18 more as the main man in Chapel Hill, is gone, and North Carolina needs to act fast if they want to find a replacement that will keep them active on the recruiting trail and competitive in a tough ACC.
Stackhouse, who averaged 16.9 points per game in his 18-year NBA career and came just shy of averaging 30 points per game during his prime with the Detroit Pistons, spent one as an assistant with the Raptors before becoming very successful as the head coach of Raptors 905 for two seasons.
Raptors fans know that Stackhouse, currently the head coach at Vanderbilt, is a master motivator who has a history of developing players into stars. The UNC alum going back home to replace Williams would be a major win for the Tar Heels and Toronto’s coaching pipeline.
Toronto Raptors: Raptors 905 coach Jerry Stackhouse could take UNC job
During his time in the G League, Stackhouse authored a tremendous 39-11 season in which he led the 905 to their first title in franchise history. He played a pivotal role in the development of Raptors youngsters like G Leaguer Chris Boucher, and he helped mold Darius Garland into a top-five pick during his stint in Nashville.
The Raptors thought so highly of Stackhouse’s coaching acumen that when Dwane Casey was fired, Stackhouse was interviewed and almost hired over Nick Nurse. If he is anywhere near Nurse as a coach, the Tar Heels would have quite the steal if they are able to pilfer him away.
The biggest negative against Stackhouse has been his record in college, as he has gone 20-37 in college and a pathetic 6-28 in conference play. However, Vanderbilt is a tough job, and Stackhouse should be able to succeed if he is able to access the well of resources that North Carolina will be able to offer him.
Stackhouse might not have the best record at Vanderbilt, but he isn’t exactly working with the biggest war chest when compared to some other SEC teams. With resources, gravitas, and the passion of the fans all behind him at UNC, Stackhouse could be able to replicate his G League success in Chapel Hill.
The Raptors have helped Chris Finch and Nate Bjorkgren get jobs in the pros, and they might be able to help land Stackhouse arguably the marquee job in college basketball.