Michigan has reportedly tapped former Fab Five standout and current Miami Heat assistant Juwan Howard as the next head coach of their basketball team, a pairing that gained steam in recent weeks after John Beilein made the somewhat surprising decision to leave the program for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Jalen Rose, one of Howard’s teammates at Michigan, lobbied for Howard to get the job last week on multiple ESPN shows, while both LeBron James and Dwyane Wade threw their support behind him as well.
The report of Howard heading to his alma mater came via Miami Heat Beat on Tuesday.
On Wednesday afternoon, Jon Rothstein and Jeff Goodman also reported the news, with the latter bringing word that Michigan gave him a five-year deal.
Howard has been an assistant with the Heat since 2013, following his retirement as a player. He was the fifth overall pick by Washington in the 1994 NBA Draft, and spent 19 years in the NBA. He won two rings as a member of the Heat in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Howard averaged 15.3 points and 7.5 rebounds per game in three seasons at Michigan.
Howard had been linked to multiple head coaching jobs that came open in the NBA, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, Memphis Grizziles and Los Angeles Lakers. Howard inherits a Michigan program that is coming off back-to-back 30+ win seasons under Beilein, and just two years removed from appearing in the national championship.