In the transition from Al McGuire to Hank Raymonds, Marquette's NCAA basketball champions will undergo considerable changes. Marguette the epitome of the slow-paced offensive team under McGuire, is expected to become a fast-breaking unit under Raymonds, the longtime assistant.
This assessment comes from Rick Majerus, the Marquette assistant who serves as a liaison on the staff between Raymonds, a workaholic, and the freespirited McGuire, who, basketball wise, is more conservative.
Majerus played under both Raymonds and McGuire, who completed a 20-year coaching career when his team beat North Carolina, 67-59, for the national championship Monday night in Atanta.
"Al doesn't like turnovers," said Majerus, explaining McGuire's offensive philosophy. "It's like playing cards or golf with him; he's very conservative. The moves he makes are all calculated, in his favor. He can channel all that quickness to defense because it remains constant offense is so variable.
"Hank will let them run, but he will expect the same intensity on defense. Hank is more of a perfectionist. People are going to be surprised how much more we run the ball, how much quicker we get it up court. Hank may except more in the way of varied attacks; Al tried to keep things simple."
In many ways, the McGuire image is one nurtured by the media and exploited fully by the coach in recruiting: the 48-year-old who rides a motorcycle; the man who understands youth and its problems; the man who ultimately gives you discipine in an unstructured sort of way.
"Al has a gut feeling about things; almost intuitive," Majerus said. "He knows the right time to say the right thing. He's more calculating and shrewd. Hank says what's on his mind. Al is manipulative that way; Hank is much more honest that way."
For instance, Majerus recalls the big-name starter a few years ago who was hurting the team. He was a senior and a lucrative pro contract was in the offing. McGuire wanted to bench him. "He told the kid to fake an injury, that no one would know and he would still get his money in the pro draft," Majerus recalled.
Yet, in four major areas involving the basketball program, the two coaches have the same philosophy, although they sometimes use different means to reach the end.
Loyalty - Majerus says, for example, that neither coach forgot the people who put the team in the position to win the national title. The coaches made sure that former players, professors, priests and high-school coaches had the opportunities to get tickets to the finals.
Hard work - "Each channels his energies in his own ways," said Majerus. "Al does a lot of things. Hank's attuned to working only at one thing. Basketball is Hank's whole thing. He doesn't have anything going on the side."
Basketball knowledge - Both are analytical, although McGuire does not like that image. Majerus recently wrote a book on the Marquette defense. "I wrote it," he said, "but all the ideas were Al's."
Education - Both are academically oriented. Raymonds believes in education because he got a good one, McGuire because he didn't get a good one, according to Majerus. Three recent Marquette hardship cases - Jim Chones, Maurice Lucas and Larry McNeill - are all nearing degrees.
"The biggest difference between Hank and Al is personal lifestyle," said Majerus. "Hank is a 9-to-5 worker and a family man. His idea of a good time is going to the ice-cream parlor with his daughter."
"It's not that Al is not a good family man. He is," Majerus said. "But Al has no concept of time. It doesn't make a difference to him whether it's Sunday or Tuesday. Al enjoys life. There is a big difference between being alive and living."
Majerus recalls airplane trips. Raymonds, a consummate basketball educator, loves to sit next to another coach or a referee and discuss basketball. McGuire prefers somebody like an accountant or a scuba diver and, as a rule, doesn't even tell them he is a coach.