It’s Not Just Basketball


What is it with this North Carolina-Kansas connection? We all know that “our” Dean Smith was actually born in Emporia, Kansas, and played basketball at the University of Kansas. KU also gave Smith his first coaching job as an assistant to Phog Allen. Roy Williams’ Carolina-Kansas peregrinations occupy a central part of his autobiography, Hard Work. Well, this Carolina-Kansas connection started way before Ol’ Roy was born. While reading the University Librarian’s report for 1927-1928 I came across this: “Mr. Charles M. Baker, assistant librarian and professor of library administration since 1919, resigned in August to become director of libraries of the University of Kansas.” Mr. Baker had a long tenure at KU, serving as director of the university library until 1952. He then served an additional five years as a bibliographer, retiring in 1957.

I wonder how many other examples of this career path exist? I’m sure that readers of this blog know of others.

2 thoughts on “It’s Not Just Basketball”

  1. Former UNC basketball star Matt Doherty was an assistant coach for Roy Williams at Kansas from 1992 until 1999. He then was head coach at UNC from 2000 to 2003.

    Former UNC basketball player Larry Brown was head coach at University of Kansas from 1983 to 1988.

  2. Don’t forget the most recent connection– Bernadette Gray-Little was Provost at UNC before becoming Chancellor at KU.

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