Villanova coach Jay Wright shot down any speculation about his interest in the Philadelphia 76ers’ head coaching vacancy on Wednesday.
“I am not a candidate for the job,” he posted on Twitter. “I am very happy and honored to coach at Villanova.”
Wright, who led the suburban Philadelphia school to NCAA Tournament championships in 2016 and 2018, was rumored as a possible replacement for Brett Brown.
Sixers general manager Elton Brand fired Brown on Aug. 24 after the team was swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Los Angeles Clippers assistant coach Tyronn Lue also has been mentioned as a top candidate. Lue was the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers for parts of four seasons, leading them to an NBA championship in 2015-16.
“The 76ers have a great leader in Elton Brand, outstanding young talent, and an incredible opportunity for any coach to compete for a championship,” Wright wrote. “As a lifetime 76ers fan, I have confidence they will bring in the right coach to build on what Brett Brown has developed.”
Wright, 58, has been the head coach of the Wildcats since 2001. He is a six-time Big East Coach of the Year and two-time Naismith national Coach of the Year. His record at Villanova is 472-182 with 14 appearances in the NCAA Tournament. The Associated Press named him the men’s basketball Coach of the Decade for the 2010s.
He is one of only three active NCAA men’s coaches to have won multiple NCAA championships, joining Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski and North Carolina’s Roy Williams.