Lorenzo Romar fired as Washington head coach
Lorenzo Romar has been fired as head coach at Washington.
Romar went 9-22 this past season despite having potential No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz on the roster, losing their last 13 games. Romar has missed the NCAA tournament the last six seasons despite having five first round picks in those six years, and that does not include Fultz.
“I was really looking forward to coaching our team next year and beyond. However, God had a different plan,” Romar said in a statement released by the program.
The big story here becomes the future of Michael Porter Jr. and his father, Michael Porter Sr. Junior is the potential No. 1 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft and Senior spent last season as an assistant coach on the Washington staff, where Junior signed a Letter of Intent. Romar and Porter Sr. are very close -- Romar is Porter Jr.'s godfather, and the decision to go to Washington had a lot more to do with how important family is to the Porters than the checks the family got as an assistant coach -- and it’s hard to imagine the family staying at the school that just fired Romar.
So where do they end up?
The easy answer is Missouri. The Porters lived in Columbia for seven years before moving to Seattle. There are eight Porter children, and the two eldest currently play on the Missouri women’s team for Robin Pingeton, the sister of Lisa Porter, the matriarch of the Porter clan.
(UPDATE (6:35 p.m. ET): According to ESPN, Porter Sr. will join Martin’s staff at Missouri.)
As far as the future of the Washington program is concerned, the danger here is that the Huskies might lost their grip on the talent in the Pacific Northwest. There is a ton of talent in the Seattle area, and that talent is what Romar built his success off of. Whoever takes his place is going to have to be able to build a fence around the state.
That hire is also going to have to make the alumni happy. Where Romar lacked in x’s-and-o’s he made up for with the gift of gab. Everyone that meets him will sweat that he is a great human being -- that’s why his former players are very loyal to him, so that’s not a bridge that Washington is going to want to burn.
Washington is a good job. Seattle is a terrific place to live and there is plenty of talent in the area.
One obvious name that you’re going to hear is Brandon Roy, who is currently coaching Porter Jr. and his little brother, Jontay, at their high school in Seattle. He’s never coached at the Division I level, but he played in the NBA and is probably the most popular player to ever come through the program. But another one that might actually make sense? Gregg Marshall. His wife is from Bellingham, Washington, and if he’s tired of dealing with the Selection Committee being totally unable to accurately evaluate his Wichita State team, there are worse places to jump to than Washington.