Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Q&A with Melvin Watkins

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Here’s a quick Q&A with Arkansas associate head coach Melvin Watkins, a former 49ers head coach and point guard. He had a 42-20 in two seasons with the 49ers in 1997-98 and helped Charlotte to the 1977 Final Four. He left for Charlotte for Texas A&M, where he was head coach from 1999-2004. This is his first season at Arkansas after six seasons as an assistant coach at Missouri.

Q. Is this the first time one of your teams has played Charlotte?

“Yes, and I hope it’s the last time!”

Q. What kinds of emotions will you have tonight?

“Not as much as you’d think, since it’s not at Charlotte. If it was (at Halton Arena), I could be all over the place. But the fact is, it’s here and I’ve been removed for some years. They’re not kids I recruited, so that makes it different. Still, they’re the 49ers and they’ll always have a special place in my heart.”

Q. Do you have much connection with the 49ers basketball program?

“Purposely, I stay away a bit. You’ve got to allow the coaching staff there to do their job. So I’m not running any kind of interference. When Bobby Lutz was there, I might have, but he was my assistant when I was there. I still get some calls from people, but I don’t want to interfere.”

Q. Do you ever get back to Charlotte?

“I did go back this summer. I took my kids and my grandkids to the arena, and they’ve got my jersey up in there. So that was pretty special.”

Q. How are things at Arkansas?

“What I like is the passion for sports they have here. Basketball has been off some, and that’s why we’re here, to get it going again. This is the only show in town, in the state, really. They don’t have pro sports here. So we want to get this building rocking and rolling again, to get back to that.”

Q. Do you know Alan Major?

“I do not, other than to be in the profession, just to sit down say hello once or twice. I knew him when he was at Ohio State a little, so it’s been from afar. Just looking at what I’ve seen this year, they need to give him time to get it going. I mean, they played at a very high level against Davidson, so it appears the potential is there.”

Q. Do you have your Charlotte football season tickets yet”

“I told Judy (Rose) I should get some free ones. She didn’t agree with me!”


Anonymous said...

Melvin please come rescue us!

Anonymous said...

I love Melvin. He no longer plays. He left us and could not get it done at a&m. I wish him the best and he is welcome to visit anytime. GO NINERS!!


Anonymous said...

Mel, please buy FSLs. You made a lot of money here and ton at A&M. And, you have been paid handsomely at Mizzou and now with the Hogs. Pony up ALUM!

Anonymous said...

8:19, everyone close to the program knew Melvin was NOT a great in-game coach. He is no saviour.