Take yourselves back to the year 2004. Starting to build something of a dynasty, Emeka Okafor and Connecticut brought home the NCAA Basketball national championship, knocking off upstart Georgia Tech in the title game. Jameer Nelson helped anchor Saint Joseph’s to a 1-seed, while names like Lawrence Roberts, Julius Hodge, and Josh Childress were among the best players in the game.
As that season came to an end, it was time for change at several programs across the nation. Some were forced into head coaching searches due to abysmal play or program changes, while the domino effect would affect several more as the offseason progressed. Jobs like Georgetown, Houston, Ohio State, and Texas A&M desperately needed new leadership, and hiring a new head coach became an important matter.
We’ve said this several times already and we’ll say it again: hiring the right head coach is vital for the success of a college basketball program. If you get the hire wrong, you could set your program back for years. Even if you’re talented Blue Blood, it’s important to get it right. There were many kinds of openings in 2004 but they all needed filling one way or another.
We’ll be looking closely at some of the hires made during that offseason, pointing out the ten best from the cycle. Obviously, not every hire can be pointed out (nor were they all good), but the ten we’ll dive into was pretty important.
Without any more delay, let’s get into these names, looking closely at some of those coaching hires from 2004.