LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 14: Head coach Tim Floyd of the UTEP Miners talks to his players during a timeout during their game against the UNLV Rebels at the Thomas & Mack Center December 14, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada. UNLV won 65-54. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
In Dana O'Neil's piece on college basketball coaches and their relationships with one another, we're given one interesting tidbit about Arizona Wildcats head coach Sean Miller.
It hardly has much to do with the story, but apparently Miller and UTEP head coach Tim Floyd are good friends.
That Tim Floyd. The one who you all stalked TMZ style during Arizona's wacky search for Lute Olson's replacement. The one who left USC just as the hammer came down because of the improper gifts given to recruit OJ Mayo during his time as a Trojan.
From O'Neil's story:
Arizona coach Sean Miller has found a resource, he said, in UTEP's Tim Floyd, a guy he never coached with or even coached against. The two crossed paths by happenstance but once they did, a friendship blossomed that now is a two-way information street.
"Five years ago, I wouldn't have known him," Miller said. "Now we talk all the time."
Anyway, I suppose this coincidental blossoming of a friendship is to be expected in college basketball. The sport has become, thanks to the internet and the intense scouting of prospects, more competitive and less friendly; that's the whole theme to the piece, anyway.
Coaches know which players to hound, thereby causing them to chase the same guys, and the recruiting bulldogs such as Miller and former Wildcat Josh Pastner know that there's little time for discussing a Princeton offense over a steak dinner.
There's hardly time for family time.
"It's hard, hard for all of us because the demands on the job now are endless," Miller said. "We're all pulled in so many directions and then when you have time, you need to give it to your own family. Inevitably what gives is that ability to get together for a long weekend or to talk basketball. Sometimes it's the easiest thing to give up but it shouldn't be that way. We need to keep it alive."
But don't think college basketball is all heartless backstabbing.
There's enough time in the day for Miller to chat up the man who almost had his job. Then again, who's Floyd to compete on the recruiting front with the Wildcats?