U-M's Beilein reportedly interviewed for Pistons' opening

Associated Press • Jun 2, 2018 at 12:57 AM

DETROIT — Michigan's John Beilein has interviewed for the Detroit Pistons' coaching vacancy, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Friday because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter. Beilein led the Wolverines to the NCAA championship game this past season, the second time in six years he'd accomplished that. Michigan lost to Louisville in 2013 and Villanova this year.

The Pistons are searching for a new coach after Stan Van Gundy's ouster. Van Gundy spent four seasons as their coach, and he was also in charge of basketball operations. Detroit now has to fill both those roles.

The 65-year-old Beilein has been at Michigan for 11 seasons.

ESPN first reported Beilein's interview with the Pistons.

In addition to his two Final Four appearances, Beilein has won Big Ten titles at Michigan in 2012 and 2014, and he won the Big Ten Tournament in 2017 and 2018.

Long considered one of college basketball's top offensive minds, Beilein produced a team this season that was one of the best in the country at the defensive end. Michigan now has to replace big man Moe Wagner, who left school early for the NBA, but Charles Matthews announced this week he was staying with the Wolverines. Michigan is also bringing in a top-20 recruiting class this coming season, according to Scout.com.

Before arriving at Michigan, Beilein worked his way up through the college basketball coaching ranks, winning consistently in Division I stops at Canisius, Richmond, and West Virginia. His college coaching career began in 1978 at Erie Community College. He went from there to Nazareth and then Le Moyne.

Beilein is 799-461 in 39 seasons as a college coach. He's 248-143 at Michigan.

Pistons, general manager Bower part ways

The Detroit Pistons and general manager Jeff Bower have parted ways, an NBA source has confirmed.

The news was first reported by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

The move was anticipated for some time but happened earlier than expected. Bower's contract was set to expire June 30 and he had been overseeing the Pistons' front-office duties, including preparation for the June 21 draft.

The Pistons last week hired Ed Stefanski as a senior adviser to owner Tom Gores. Stefanski is leading the search for a new president of basketball operations/head coach following Stan Van Gundy's dismissal on May 7.

Trajan Langdon, the assistant GM for the Brooklyn Nets, has emerged as a leading candidate for the Pistons' president/GM job. Langdon was a scout for the San Antonio Spurs from 2012-2015 before joining the Nets. The Duke alum played three seasons for the Cleveland Cavaliers before spending eight years in Europe.

Former Piston Tayshaun Prince and TV analyst Brent Barry also have been mentioned for possible roles in the front office.

Meanwhile, the Pistons coaching search is in full swing. University of Michigan coach John Beilein and former Toronto Raptors coach Dwane Casey interviewed for the position on Thursday. TNT analyst Kenny Smith previously interviewed. Miami Heat assistant and former U-M player Juwan Howard are scheduled to interview.

Stefanski has retained former NBA coaches, Bernie Bickerstaff and Jim Lynam, to help with the interview process.

Bower, 57, joined the Pistons in 2014, shortly after Van Gundy was hired. Bower was the head coach of the New Orleans Hornets for most of the 2009-10 season and was the team's GM in 2002-03 and again from 2005-2010.

Recommended for You

    Grand Haven Tribune Videos