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Can Aaron McKie Match Fran Dunphy’s Success?

Can Aaron McKie Match Fran Dunphy's Success?

Background

McKie was a guard at Simon Gratz high school in Philadelphia and at Temple from 1991-1994 for three seasons. He then played in the NBA from 1994-2007 playing with the Trail Blazers, Pistons, Sixers and Lakers. Continued, the majority of his career was spent in Philadelphia with the Sixers from 1997-2005. After his NBA career, he joined the Sixers coaching staff from 2008-2013. In 2014 he joined Fran Dunphy’s staff at Temple and over the course of last season was named head coach in waiting. He is a Philly guy who will have the opportunity to coach in his hometown.

Replacing Fran Dunphy

There will be difficulty in replacing a legendary coach who had great success at Temple. He went 270-162 making the NCAA tournament eight times in that span. The transition should be smooth knowing that he was the coach to be during last season. He will have great insight into the job as he has been in the program since 2014 as an assistant. Also, he has been in the Philadelphia area for a long time so he knows everything that is needed to recruit at a high level. The preparation of McKie will be a very good level and he will understand what it takes to succeed. Replacing Dunphy won’t be easy but McKie seems extremely prepared for the coaching opportunity.

Immediate Success In Year 1

The roster coming back is very formidable and quite capable of having a successful season. The backcourt will be very good with Quinton Rose and Nate Pierre-Louis leading the way. J.P. Moorman will be a very important factor in the success of Temple if he can develop into the third option, they will have a chance to return to the NCAA tournament. James Scott will be a very important piece as he is a high-level scorer. Having these four quality players creates a solid nucleus for year one. The ability to be successful in the non-conference will be really key for Temple to get the opportunity for an at large bid. The role players of Justyn Hamilton, De’Vondre Perry and Davion Moore giving quality minutes in the frontcourt.

Image result for quinton rose temple

NBA Roots

His NBA background gives him a great ability to recruit players to Temple. He will be able to attract players who have intentions of playing at the next level. Also, his player development skills will be really good knowing what it takes to get to the next level. The connection McKie has with Allen Iverson is a great recruiting pitch as he knows how to create the best relationships. He will be able to adapt very well being apart of the NBA as a coach and a player. Further, the NBA connections will give him a great chance to succeed at Temple especially with recruits.

Philadelphia Connection

His connection to Philadelphia is extremely strong and his ability to recruit in the region will be vital for success. Being a long time player and coach with Temple and the Sixers gives him the necessary connections to succeed at Temple. There is no other person who has the connection to collegiate and professional basketball connection in the Philadelphia area. McKie will have great confidence in coaching at his alma mater Temple and being in the city he grew up in.

Conclusion

McKie is looking to get off to a great start in year one replacing Fran Dunphy. He has a returning core of Rose, Pierre-Louis, Moorman and Scott. This gives him many scoring options on offense and a good defensive lineup. Next, it is important for Temple to succeed in the non-conference will be important to land an at large bid. The NBA connections of McKie will be very important towards player development and recruiting creating the best roster possible. His connection to Philadelphia is very important to his success as head coach of Temple. He knows the area extremely well, in turn, will make him great on the recruiting trail. Aaron McKie will have a capable roster and connections to continue the winning tradition of Temple.

 

Images Courtesy of, Temple University Athletics, Zimbio

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