Hubert Davis had long been considered the heir apparent to Roy Williams, and after Williams announced his retirement last week, it appeared only a matter of time for Davis.
On Monday, the school made it official, naming Davis, 50, as Williams’ successor. He becomes the first African-American head coach in the storied history of the program.
UNC-Greensboro coach Wes Miller, also a UNC alumnus, was considered the primary challenger to Davis, who helped lead the Tar Heels to the 1991 Final Four and spent 12 years in the NBA after being drafted by the Knicks.
Davis has been known as a quiet, introverted type but now becomes the face of a program that produced his uncle Walter Davis, Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, Rasheed Wallace, Jerry Stackhouse, Tyler Hansbrough and many other stars.
He will be formally introduced at a press conference Tuesday.
“I am honored and humbled to be given the opportunity to lead this program,’” Davis said. “I would not be here without Coach Dean Smith, Coach Bill Gurthridge and Coach Roy Williams, they taught me so much – and I’m eager to walk their path in my shoes and with my personality. I also would not be here without Chancellor Guskiewicz and Bubba Cunningham. I appreciate their faith in me and I look forward to working closely with them.
“I love this University. I played here, I earned my degree here, I fell in love with my wife here, I got married here, I moved here after I retired from the NBA and I have raised my family here. I am proud to lead this team, and I can’t wait for all that comes next.”
Said Cunningham, the school’s AD: “Hubert Davis is the best leader we can possibly have for our men’s basketball program. He teaches student-athletes on and off the court. He inspires his fellow staff members. He is strongly committed to family. He has a tenacious, burning desire to be the best he can possibly be; we witnessed that when he was a player, a broadcaster and an assistant coach – and I have no doubt he will ensure than our student-athletes and program will be the best they can be, as well.”