Roy Williams, the Hall of Fame basketball coach who won three national championships with the University of North Carolina and became one of the faces of men’s college basketball, is retiring after 33 seasons as a head coach, university officials said on Thursday.
Williams won three national championships with the Tar Heels in 18 seasons. He also spent 15 seasons with the University of Kansas, and took a total of 30 teams to the N.C.A.A. tournament, reaching the Final Four nine times.
His last championship came in 2017, when the Tar Heels beat Gonzaga in the tournament final a year after losing the championship game to Villanova on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.
Williams was expected to address fans and journalists at a news conference on Thursday afternoon.
Williams piled up 903 wins, more than anyone else coaching major men’s programs besides Mike Krzyzewski of Duke and Jim Boeheim of Syracuse, and won 77.4 percent of his games, the sixth highest winning percentage in N.C.A.A. men’s basketball history.
Williams’ Tar Heels were subpar this season compared with his long track record. North Carolina finished 18-11, in the middle of the pack in the Atlantic Coast Conference, and lost in the first round of the N.C.A.A. tournament to Wisconsin as a No. 8 seed. It was the first loss for Williams in the opening round of the tournament.
“Basketball can be the greatest game in the world and when you lose it’s like somebody reaches in and grabs your heart and shakes it right in front of you, just taunts you a little bit,” Williams said after the loss. “But coaching basketball, that’s pretty dagum good.”
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