Mike Bibby, Miles Simon

Arizona's backcourt of Mike Bibby and Miles Simon celebrate the Wildcats' overtime win against Kentucky in the 1997 national championship. 

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Mike Bibby, who helped Arizona capture its only NCAA basketball championship in 1997 as a freshman point guard, said he believes the Wildcats should hire a former player under Lute Olson to lead the transition after Sean Miller was fired on Wednesday.

Bibby, who has no college basketball coaching experience, isn't saying he should be considered to lead the Wildcats into a new era. But he said he would love to be an assistant coach there.

"I think Arizona should bring back someone that played for the late great Coach O," Bibby told The Arizona Republic in a text message. "There are a lot of head coaches that played for Coach O that would be a great choice.

"I would love to be an assistant coach there. Anywhere on that staff is a dream job for me."

Bibby went to UA after leading Phoenix Shadow Mountain to its first big-school basketball championship in 1996.

In his first year in Tucson, Bibby and Miles Simon comprised the backcourt that made a run through the NCAA Tournament for Olson's first and only national championship.

After two years playing for the Wildcats, Bibby embarked on a 14-year NBA career, before leading his son Mike's Shadow Mountain team. He coached at Shadow Mountain from 2013-19.

Bibby showed that he could coach during a great run at his high school alma mater, leading the Matadors to four consecutive state titles and to the GEICO Nationals twice during his five years leading the program. Shadow Mountain won four state titles in his five-year run.

He has completed his college degree in recent years, and has been working in the NBA developmental program for coaches.

This article originally ran on tucson.com.


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