After a few days of speculation and interviews, Marquette has decided to hire Duke’s Associate Head Coach Steve Wojciechowski as their new Head Coach. This will be Wojciechowski’s first head coaching job after being on the sidelines with Duke since 1999. He spent one year playing professional basketball overseas after his four year career at Duke from 1994 to 1998, before becoming an assistant under Mike Krzyzewski. “Wojo” as he is commonly referred to, has coached Duke’s big men for most of his time at Duke. He was a part of 2 national championship teams in 2001 and 2010. Despite the stereotype that Duke big men don’t fair well in the NBA, Wojo has coached Shane Battier, Elton Brand, Carlos Boozer, Loul Deng, Ryan Kelly, Josh McRoberts, Miles & Mason Plumlee, Kyle Singler, and Shavlik Randolph, all who are currently in the NBA. Coach Wojciechowski will be dearly missed, he seems to have been a favorite among most Duke fans.
The departure of Chris Collins to Northwestern last year and Wojciechowski this year will be a major hit to the Duke coaching staff in the coming years. It appears that Jon Scheyer and Nate James will take on bigger roles this off-season and they will obviously hire another assistant or grad assistant. The question is whom will they bring onto the staff? It seems to be pretty wide open; I believe any of the plethora of former players will be the primary options. I personally would love to see them hire someone with at least some coaching experience; perhaps bringing Chris Carrawell back onto the staff could help with the lack of experience on the sideline. The departure of Collins and Wojciechowski will force more upon Coach K, he will probably need to be more hands on at least at the start of next season while the staff defines their roles.
I will certainly miss Coach Wojo, he was one of my favorite players while he was at Duke and definitely a favorite of mine on the coaching staff. He fits perfectly with the Marquette teams from the last few years, he is a great recruiter and I wish him the best of luck! I know he will do great things at Marquette!