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Vanderbilt Basketball Coaching Search: Tommy Amaker

Are Vanderbilt fans ready for a coach who will make them long for Kevin Stallings?

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Tommy Amaker, Head Coach, Harvard Crimson

Career Record: 351-234 (19 years; 4 at Seton Hall, 6 at Michigan, 9 at Harvard); 5 NCAA Tournament appearances; 4-5 NCAA Tournament record

Accomplishments: Won or shared the Ivy League title five straight years; took Harvard to four straight NCAA Tournaments after the Crimson hadn't been there in 66 years; made the Sweet 16 in 2000 at Seton Hall.

Before He Was A Head Coach: Played at Duke, then served as an assistant coach under Mike Krzyzewski for nine years.

Ties to Vanderbilt: None that we know of.

Stylistic Tendencies: Amaker's teams generally shoot well, aren't great at avoiding turnovers, and don't get a lot of offensive rebounds.  Sound like anybody we know?

Would he come here? This actually isn't clear.  Amaker's wife is a tenured professor at Harvard and it's not exactly like Harvard can't afford to pay Amaker what he wants to keep him from taking the Vanderbilt job.

Thoughts: I honestly don't know why we're discussing this, but Amaker's name has come up in a couple of outlets and it's said that David Williams likes him.  So... those are the facts.  It's worth asking, if Amaker had played and been an assistant coach at Louisville and then put together this record at UNC-Wilmington after a mediocre run at a Big Ten school, would we even be having this conversation?  But the fact that he's doing this at an "academic" school means that some people think Vanderbilt should consider him.

With all that said, Amaker wouldn't be a terrible hire.  He wasn't terrible at Michigan, just merely okay for six years (and that does come with the caveat that Michigan was dealing with NCAA sanctions early in his tenure resulting from the Fab Five investigation.)  But the upside here is basically... Kevin Stallings.  And if Kevin Stallings is the best-case scenario... again, why are we having this conversation?