Welcome to the new age of coaching.
Ollie, 41, made money in the NBA as a gritty guard for 12 franchises in a 13-year playing career. Most of his coaching peers began their careers as low-level assistants and pushed through the various hierarchical rungs to eventually secure head-coaching gigs.
Ollie didn't do it that way. And that's fine.
Longtime coach Jim Calhoun essentially bequeathed this Connecticut program to his former standout guard, then an assistant coach, two years ago. Ollie's limited time on the bench -- a common knock against young coaches -- was fodder for doubters when he accepted the job in 2012. He had coached only two seasons as a member of Calhoun's staff. But he was ready. Clearly.
"Every day, you saw these guys being inspired," Allen said. "You saw them out there playing with so much passion. You saw Kevin's passion on the floor. That's how he always played. ... I don't believe that there's ever a traditional path of life. We all find our journeys in many different ways."
Ollie's rapid ascent is remarkable but no longer foreign. Ollie is a member of a new breed of younger coaches who've rebuked tradition and assembled successful programs with tactics past generations did not embrace.
The Bobby Knight era of coaching encouraged discipline over everything.
via Connecticut's Kevin Ollie leads a new brand of coaching - ESPN