The Environment Of Ewing’s Hiring As Georgetown Head Coach

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By Ryan Touhey,

Basketball hall of famer and New York Knicks legend Patrick Ewing, will return to his grassroots later this year, as he was named the new head coach of the Georgetown Hoyas last week on April 3. Ewing, the first Hoya to be selected first overall in an NBA draft back in 1985, played for Georgetown from 1981-85 and led them to three NCAA Championship games in his four years of eligibility.

He helped them win it all in 1984 over Houston. His personal accolades included him being named an All-American three times, becoming only one of four players to reach 2,000 career points and being the leader in rebounds, games played and blocks. He has also won two Olympic gold medals.

According to, Georgetown issued a statement from Ewing. “My four years at Georgetown were the best of my life,” said Ewing. “Georgetown is my home and it is a great honor for me to return to my alma mater and serve as the next head coach. I have been preparing to be a head coach for many years and can’t wait to return to the Hilltop.”

This will be the first time that Ewing will be coaching college basketball. After retiring from the NBA after the 2001-02 season, Ewing was an assistant coach for the Washington Wizards, Houston Rockets and Orlando Magic. He was an associate head coach for the Charlotte Hornets.

But it’s because of this résumé, that Ewing’s hiring led to criticism from college basketball analyst, Jay Williams. According to CSN Chicago, Williams stated in a Facebook video, “Look, I love Patrick Ewing. I think Patrick Ewing is a great human being. But to make him the head coach of Georgetown, I think that’s a major problem. When you’re an assistant coach at the NBA level, you do not have to grind like a coach 24/7. Will Patrick Ewing be able to hit the ground running? You need to recruit in the game of college basketball.”

Ewing’s former Knick coach Pat Riley said, “I am absolutely delighted for him and I think he’ll do a great job at Georgetown. Patrick Ewing was the first. He has come home.” According to the New York Times, Ewing announced on “The Dan Patrick Show,” that he was trying to connect with former NBA player Allen Iverson about recruiting players for the Hoyas. Iverson, also out of Georgetown, was drafted in the first round of the 1996 NBA Draft.

“I’m not sure if he will be on the staff but he’s always welcome,” Ewing told the Times. “I’m going to use him every way I can. There’s a kid down there in Connecticut who’s a big fan of his, who he committed to come to Georgetown.”

As Georgetown welcomes back Ewing, they bid farewell to John Thompson III, who had been the head coach of Georgetown since 2004. Thompson led the Hoyas to the Big East Tournament title in 2007. “To hire a coach with his depth of coaching experience and personal achievements is tremendous,” Georgetown athletic director Lee Reed told ESPN. “It is a thrill to have him come back to his alma mater and continue the legacy of tradition and success he had as a student-athlete on the Hilltop.”

Georgetown’s recruits for next year include Tremont Waters, who is a guard from Notre Dame High School in Fairfield, CT. Georgetown has also expressed interest in Dedric and K.J. Lawson who are 6’9” and 6’7” respectively, and both from Memphis, Tennessee.

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