Maryland campus president Wallace Loh said Friday the school plans to name the court at Comcast Center in honor of retiring basketball coach Gary Williams.
Speaking at Williams’ retirement press conference, Loh drew loud applause when he unveiled the plan. Williams retired Thursday after 22 seasons at Maryland.
“In the coming weeks, I will join [athletic director] Kevin Anderson in accepting his recommendation and recommending to the board of regents of this university that this basketball court be named for Gary Williams,” Loh said.
A court naming isn’t a common honor, but not unheard of, either. In the ACC, both Duke (Mike Krzyzewski) and Georgia Tech (Bobby Cremins) have courts named for them.
“It’s a great honor,” Williams said. “I didn’t walk out here 22 years saying ‘I hope they put my name on the court.’ Now that it’s here, it’s a great honor. I’ve had some really good people help with that, which I really appreciate. I’ve been fortunate in terms of time, to be a coach here as long as I have. That all goes into it. When that happens, hopefully a lot of people will feel the same way, that they were responsible for that happening.”
While Loh and Anderson support the plan, it still requires approval from the university system’s board of regents.
Anderson, though, does not expect that to be a major hurdle.
“I think it will happen much sooner than later,” Anderson said. When asked if a court-naming ceremony would occur during the next basketball season, he said, “Absolutely. I would almost be quite sure of that.”
—- Patrick Stevens