Taurean Green is making a nice living playing basketball overseas and is contemplating a future career in coaching.
The former point guard was the engine of UF’s back-to-back national title teams. Green had the ability to fill it up when he needed to. But he also was smart and unselfish enough to know when the ball needed to go a frontline that included three future NBA lottery picks.
So it’s easy to see why Green gave such an impassioned response when I asked if he felt Florida’s 2006 and 2007 national title teams have gotten their due in terms of national legacy. The subject came up when I told him that ESPN failed to recognize former teammate Lee Humphrey as one of the best college 3-point shooters of all time. Forget the fact that Humphrey still holds the NCAA Tournament record for most 3-pointers (47), or that teammate Joakim Noah had a then-record 27 blocked shots during UF’s 2006 NCAA Tournament run.
“Commentators, they pump up certain programs for ratings,” Green said. “People say this past Kentucky team is the best that they’ve ever seen and they forget about us, mainly because we are more of a football school. That’s OK, though. We know what we did.”
When I later tweeted that I would pick the 06-07 Gators to beat the 12 ‘Cats, it caused quite a firestorm. My reasoning, Joakim Noah would expose Anthony Davis’ biggest weakness. Davis was prone to getting tired against up-tempo teams. Noah, the best conditioned big man college basketball has seen in a decade, would be able to run Davis out of the gym.
But back to Green. He just completed a season playing overseas in Turkey and is contemplating accepting an invite to an NBA training camp. He also has offers to play overseas in Italy, Germany, Belgium and France.
Green said he will play pro basketball “as long as my body will let me.” But he’s also already began thinking of his post-playing career as a coach. He spent time during his offseasons with current UF assistant coach Matt McCall when McCall was at FAU.
Green’s father, former NBA power forward Sidney Green, was a former college coach at FAU and Southampton College.
“I just like the teaching apsect of it, being able to give back to the game,” Green said.
Green also said he thinks he can be an “excellent” recruiter.
Could we see Taurean coaching the Gators someday? Could the 06-07 Gators beat the 12 Wildcats?
What are your thoughts?
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Postscript — Green is graduating this weekend with a degree in recreation, parks and tourism. He returned to UF to take summer courses after leaving school following his junior year in 2007.