My only point is that a good athletic director should be able to examine candidates, find the right guy for his job and pull the trigger. In some cases, the right guy might be a 50-year-old veteran. But I’ve long believed great coaches are often identifiable at a young age, always admired athletic directors with the you-know-whats to take a chance on one. With any luck, this group of coaches at this Final Four — who were all 31-or-younger when they got their first head coaching job — will help push more athletic directors to do the same, to take a chance, to worry less about what somebody’s done and more about what somebody’s built to do.
“I hope so, too,” Smart said. “I love young coaches and I think there are a lot of terrific guys out there in their late 20s and early 30s who could do just as good a job as I could.”