Georgetown University basketball Coach John Thompson yesterday asked the Univesity of Florida to withdraw his name from consideration for its head-coaching job a few hours after meeting with Florida Athletic Director Bill Carr.
"I don't fee it's advantageous to me in general," Thompson said, shortly after talking the situation over with his staff. "It's a combination of a lot of things.
"Florida is a great opportunity, but not for me. I was the only person for whom I was making a decision."
Carr had called GU Athletic Director Frank Rienzo late last week, asking permission to talk to Thompson. On Monday, Thompson told Carr he would listen to what the Florida job entailed and yesterday he listened.
"I only said in the beginning I wanted to listen. I heard. After hearing, that's how I feel.
"It never ceases to amaze me the reaction of people when you say you're listening to something. I've always been taught it's stupid not to listen," Thompson said.
Florida has been seeking a new coach since John Lotz was fired last month. Carr wants an established head coach.
Syracuse Coach Jim Boeheim said earlier this week that the fact it would take two to three years to rebuild and that Carr wants to name his new coach by March 1 were factors why he (Boheim) wasn't interested in even talking.
Norm Sloan, the coach at North Carolina State who formerly coached at Florida, is believed to be the leading THOMPSON, From D1> contender for the job. It is not know if he wants it.
Thompson, 38, has been at Georgetown eight seasons, taking the Hoyas to five straight postseason tournaments, with a sixth practically assured following Tuesday's 52-50 victory over nationally second-ranked Syracuse. The Hoyas are 18-5 going into Saturday night's home game against Detroit.
Thompson, who took over after a 3-23 season and converted the Hoyas into a consistent top 20-caliber team, also discussed publicly yesterday a Washington Post column quoting a friend of his that said the main reason Thompson would consider leaving the Hilltop is McDonough Arena, a 4,000-seat relic.
"I like it here at Georgetown and I've received nothing but the best of cooperation since I've been at Georgetown," Thompson said. "We've proven we can compete here. I feel that coaches don't change policies of universities and it would be very foolish of me to use a job offer or even a job consideration as leverage to get a university to change its policy.
"If I came here with the idea in mind of changing Georgetown University's policy, I never would have realized any success. I had to accept Georgetown University -- first identify what it was, accept it for what it was and then go about making that successful."
Now, eight years after becoming a college coach, Thompson seeks to win a national championship and has the credentials to accomplish it elsewhere.
"At which point I feel its (Georgetown's) policy is not within coordination with what I want to achieve personally myself, then I have to consider other things. And that's a normal porcess everybody goes through, not just basketball coaches.
"And through making that decision, you listen. I don't know any simpler way to put it."
Asked whether he considered the NCAA championship his personal goal, Thompson replied: "There's no question about it. The minute I don't want to win the national championship, there's no need for me to be in basketball.
"That's extremely important to me and that's the whole comcept of what people are talking about in relation to, when you are discussing a facility.
"I don't feel the administration has misled me. I don't feel the administration has been unfair to me. But if John Thompson were at the University of Kentucky, with 23,000 seats, I'd walk around there every day trying to figure out something else I'd ask the university to do.
"That has a little bit to do with why we've had some success. Somebody at Syracuse wasn't satisfied with a 9,000-seat gym, either, so they got a 23, That's why they win. People who get satisfied don't win."
"Certainly I'd love to see a large, big, beautiful gym. If we made a cost analysis with the people we're competing with and beating and being in the top 20 with, we'd probably say we've done a doggone good job.
"So I'm sort of curious what we'd do if we had a few more things."