“If I were to ask you right now to name the guys that are 6’10” that have ever coached as a head coach in the NBA in college, and you’re not gonna find many of ’em,” Thompson said. “Because the stereotype comes into it. The little guard is the thinker. He’s the general. The 6’10” is the big dummy rebounder. [Kareem-Abdul] Jabbar, Shaq [O’Neal], if you go through most of these guys, [Ralph] Sampson, none of these guys coach.”
Real Sports researched the subject and discovered that among the 258 head coaches hired in NBA history, the vast majority of whom were once players, only 15 of them (6 percent) have been centers.
Chris Mullin, a former college and NBA guard, and a former rival of Ewing’s at St. John’s, advised Ewing when he was considering the Georgetown job.“I think it’s great for Georgetown and a great choice,” Mullin told reporters last week at Big East Media Day. “I think he’s going to get them back on top. The Big East will flourish from that, and college basketball in general. “It’s surreal, but it’s kind of cool.” Meantime, because Ewing played for Thompson at Georgetown and Thompson still exerts a great deal of influence on campus, there is speculation that Thompson is still running his old team though Ewing.
“I would say that that’s an insult to my intelligence,” Thompson told Real Sports. “This university’s too smart and too powerful to let me scare them into hiring somebody.”Said Ewing: “There’s a ball– deflated ball. We still keep it in the office. And– you know– one of the things he always told us, at some point the ball is gonna stop bouncing. So you know, you gotta have a backup plan. A Georgetown degree is a, is a powerful degree.”