Dean Smith has issued word from Chapel Hill, N.C., that UCLA will have to look elsewhere for a coach. Meanwhile a new vacancy has opened in the college basketball coaching ranks: at Harvard.

Tom (Satch) Sanders, 38, a 13-year veteran of the Boston Celtic forecourt in the NBA before coaching Hah-vuhd to a 40-60 record the past four years, returned to the Celts yesterday as assistant coach. He replaces John Killilea, who last week resigned his post at Tom Heinsohn's side to become Milwaukee Bucks' assistant.

Did K. C. Jones get a call before old teammate Sanders took the job? Might Jones be interested in Harvard, and vice versa, since he used to be head coach at Brandeis in that neck of the woods?

But back to Dean Smith, coach of the gold-medal 1976 U.S. Olympic squad and leading all active matenure in the bigs with a .751 winning percentage, 340-113, after last season's ACC championship, NCAA runner-up campaign. He said he and UCLA athletic director J.D. Morgan "talked about the basketball position there as well as a lot of other things. However, I have chosen not to become a candidate for that position.

"I fully expect to be at Carolina for the 1977-78 season." . . .

Elsewhere in academia, Harry Edwards, the sociologist, former track star and leader of the Olympic boycott by black athletes in 1968, has won his fight for faculty tenure at the University of California. Berkeley. That ends 6 1/2 years of bitter dispute over the issue . . .