Miller changes his mind and accepts Arizona job?(updated 1:25pm)

Miller changes his mind.
(4/6/2009 1:05 PM Update)

One of the ideal fits to potentially become NC State’s head basketball coach if Coach Lowe were to head back to the NBA or not get the job done next season may be off the market. It appears Sean Miller has changed his mind and may in fact accept the Arizona position over a weekend when Lee “I have a contract and I know basketball” Fowler was not attending the Final Four in Detroit.

Sean Miller accepted the job as head coach of the Arizona Wildcats on Monday, one day after turning the position down, a source close to the negotiations told Yahoo! Sports.

Miller told Arizona he would remain at Xavier late last night, then asked for a chance to sleep on the decision. After going back and forth during the morning, a source said, he informed XU athletic director Mike Bobinski of his decision at noon ET.

MILLER EXPECTED TO SPURN ARIZONA (April 6, 2009 @ 12:40am)
I am the type of person who likes to have every possible option open to him when/if a decision needs to be made. If Coach Lowe struggles next season and it just so happens that the Wolfpack is in the market for a new basketball coach, I can’t help but proclaim that this is fantastic news knowing how highly Sean regards our job.

Sean Miller is expected to be the latest to spurn Arizona.

According to sources close to the situation, the Xavier head coach met with Arizona athletic director Jim Livengood in New Mexico earlier today and has decided that – barring a last-minute change of heart – he will remain with the Musketeers.

Miller, 40, has spent the last five seasons as the head coach of the Musketeers and has made four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances – including an Elite Eight last season and a Sweet 16 this past year.

Miller joins USC’s Tim Floyd to meet with Livengood in the past few days and turn down what was once considered an elite program.

Livengood was also unsuccessful luring big names such as Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon and Gonzaga’s Mark Few.

Miller makes approximately $800,000 at Xavier and, according to sources, was offered more than $2 million a year in Tucson.

Now the Wildcats will need to find someone willing to take the job. According to sources, Utah’s Jim Boylen might be next in line.

SOURCES: ARIZONA TARGETS MILLER (April 4, 2009 @ 11:56am)

This story is worth following for a lot of reasons. There is a lot of Miller-related commentary in this discussion from a couple of days ago.

Arizona has zeroed in on Sean Miller.

This link has more:

What does make sense is Arizona’s newest target: Sean Miller.

While it may not appear to fit, he’s the ideal choice. In fact, long-term it could

Here’s why:

1) He’s 40 years old and could see the long-term picture for rebuilding in Tucson. A guy like Tim Floyd doesn’t want to get his head beaten in for two years at this stage of his career. Miller would be more apt to deal with that given that he could vie for Final Fours and maybe a national title somewhere down the line. Miller isn’t a stop-gap like some of the previous candidates (Floyd, Tubby Smith).

2) Miller can recruit. He’s a grinder who can evaluate talent (see: Derrick Brown, B.J. Raymond, etc.) and connects well with kids.

3) He can coach. Four straight NCAA tournament appearances – including a Sweet 16 this season with an unenviable point guard situation.

4) He would go toe-to-toe and wouldn’t be intimidated by any of the big boys out west – and in particular, UCLA’s Ben Howland.

Miller played at Pittsburgh and hasn’t coached anywhere out west, but he’d need to hire the right staff to get it done in Tucson. Obviously, bringing on now-Kentucky assistant Josh Pastner as his associate head coach would be huge (Pastner works for one of Miller’s closest friends, John Calipari).

Miller still hasn’t decided whether he’s going to meet with Arizona athletic director Jim Livengood, but sources indicate he’s strongly considering it.

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08-09 Basketball General

193 Responses to Miller changes his mind and accepts Arizona job?(updated 1:25pm)

  1. Dogbreath 04/04/2009 at 7:16 PM #

    Pound for pound, Tommy Izzo is the best coach in all of sports. The man has 5 final fours, a national championship, and he has had a total of 8 mcdonalds all americans in 11 years.

  2. Garrett 04/04/2009 at 7:33 PM #

    Michigan State just played a beautiful basketball game. Stunningly beautiful, especially considering the (often well-deserved) criticism of big 10 ugliness.

    Now its Nova’s turn!

  3. Dogbreath 04/04/2009 at 7:35 PM #

    Does anyone really think Fowler has the cunning to force the BOT into a buyout situation? Does the BOT have the wherewithal to know when they might be getting played? Do they have the gumption to make the necessary change? Are they completely tonedeaf, failing to recognize the resounding applause emanating from the faithful upon unsubstantiated rumors that this clown may be leaving?

    Just a few things to ponder as we watch the next few days and weeks and months and years unfold.

    SFN: When it comes to money, don’t put anything past Fowler.

  4. Wulfpack 04/04/2009 at 7:49 PM #

    You guys really prefer Packer over Kellogg? Packer’s a grumpy old man!

    Tom Izzo is the man. You can just tell his players love playing balls to the wall for him.

  5. BJD95 04/04/2009 at 7:50 PM #

    Wouldn’t a Nova/Sparty final be satisfying and fun to watch?

  6. noblepack 04/04/2009 at 7:52 PM #

    “I’ve personally come to this conclusion because in all likelihood, amidst the tumultuous fall of dominos, he’ll go elsewhere if not Arizona and if he doesn’t, it will be because Xavier makes him a counter offer that he can’t turn down. This would keep him there for a good bit longer making it harder for us to get him in another year.”

    I know that contracts are re-written midstream a lot in college athletics but it seems since our search back after Sendek that ADs have taken it to a whole new level and are locking guys in. Calipari, Barnes, and then there was Beilein( who had a large contract buyout already) all come to mind and that was three years ago. And it just seems like it’s continuing to the point that a school like NC State will need to hire someone who is a) unknown, b) fired from another school, or c) really wants out of a current bad situation and the AD will let them out (i.e. Sendek). Because we won’t step up and pay a huge buyout. I think the days of cherry picking a young up and coming coach unless you are anything other then a powerhouse school will be hard to do in a few years. You’re going to need a competent AD who knows how to spot a diamond-in-the-rough, which we don’t currently have.

    I’ve never understood the thought that you give a coach four years. If you can get an upgrade you do it. I think Miller is a pretty good coach with good pub and apparently he recruits well. This is an upgrade on all fronts. You easily dump Lowe in this situation if Miller is willing to come on board.

  7. noblepack 04/04/2009 at 7:54 PM #

    ^ and my point on Calipari is that even though Memphis locked him in, there are only a handful of schools (probably about 5 or so) that would step up and pay a buyout like it probably took. NC State isn’t one of them.

  8. spanky 04/04/2009 at 7:54 PM #

    I like Packer… only really got to listen to him the past few years (I’m young), but I liked him… told it like it was… Kellogg seems like a clown…

    I would LOOOVE to see a Nova/Sparty game at this point, it would be like last years championship game where I truly didn’t care who won and had zero emotion invested and just sat, watched, and enjoyed…

  9. Clarksa 04/04/2009 at 8:00 PM #

    I hope he goes to Arizona…he and that other guy can have fun together in the desert.

  10. BJD95 04/04/2009 at 8:17 PM #

    Man, do I ever miss Billy Packer. A giant event like that deserves some insight, damn it.

  11. wolfpackdawg 04/04/2009 at 8:19 PM #

    I hate UNC.

  12. Dogbreath 04/04/2009 at 8:28 PM #

    This 2nd game is all about rigging the TV ratings for Monday night. As every Spartan fan on the planet will be inside Ford Field, CBS’ only hope of pulling a decent eating is to ensure every redneck, Walmart fan, and gangsta in the nation is tuned in.

  13. JeremyH 04/04/2009 at 8:32 PM #

    UNC will be able to win the national championship without having to play Pitt or UConn. nice road that got paved for them.

  14. Wulfpack 04/04/2009 at 8:36 PM #

    Izzo will have his team ready this time, I will guarantee you that. But if UNC plays at this clip and continues to defend relentlessly as they have most of the tournament, it’s curtains. This is a monster of a team.

  15. CStanley 04/04/2009 at 8:41 PM #

    I’ve done my damndest to jinx this Carolina team, but it ain’t workin. This is a hell of a team that is very deserving of the National Title. Not sure who anyone thought they were kidding by thinking Carolina would choke this one away this years. It’s just a formality now. Michigan State will have nothing for the Heel Monday night.

  16. CStanley 04/04/2009 at 8:42 PM #

    And yes, Kellogg sucks a fat one. I miss Billy Packer.

  17. wufpup76 04/04/2009 at 8:47 PM #

    Villanova looks like they lost the game in the tunnel before the game even started. I see no indication that any Nova player actually believes they can win.


  18. spanky 04/04/2009 at 8:48 PM #

    I was praying with everything in me for a stereotypical poor shooting UNC final four team… but noooooo they’re “dropping sweet honey shots” as Kellogg would say

  19. packalum44 04/04/2009 at 8:54 PM #

    Why in the hell is Clark Kellog commentating the Final 4? He sucks. Send him to commentate on ESPN Classic where if you sound stupid and no one is watching, does that make you stupid? Yes. But at least we don’t have to hear you.

  20. spanky 04/04/2009 at 8:54 PM #

    Does anyone have anyway to get me a copy of the NCSU/Miami football game from November?

    [email protected]

    Sorry for the disturbance/off topic-ness

  21. wufpup76 04/04/2009 at 9:00 PM #

    “This 2nd game is all about rigging the TV ratings for Monday night. As every Spartan fan on the planet will be inside Ford Field, CBS’ only hope of pulling a decent eating is to ensure every redneck, Walmart fan, and gangsta in the nation is tuned in.”


  22. packalum44 04/04/2009 at 9:02 PM #

    Villy: “Don’t give up. Never give up.”

  23. Garrett 04/04/2009 at 9:14 PM #

    “Villanova looks like they lost the game in the tunnel before the game even started. I see no indication that any Nova player actually believes they can win.”

    I actually didn’t get that feeling. I thought nova looked like they were just pressing and trying to win the game in one play every time down court. I think if they harness that energy into something positive they can at least make it interesting in the second half.

    And yes, for all the shit talked about packer over the years, I always enjoyed his unbiased and informative insight. Bring back Billy!

  24. Noah 04/04/2009 at 9:39 PM #


    Carolina just won the national title. Bastards.

  25. ThomYorkepack 04/04/2009 at 10:02 PM #

    Michigan State has such great leadership from its head coach. They are not going to win every game, and they are not going to ‘out-talent’ the ELITE teams (like UNC), but you can be damn sure they are going to compete, play D, play together, and play tough each night. They are like the anti-NC State. The result? 5 Final Fours in 11 years.

    Izzo’s leadership style reminds me somewhat of Coach K. He’s just a master of leading college players.

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