Romar’s coaching staff gets overhaul

todd.dybas@thenewstribune.comJune 6, 2013 

Washington has overhauled its basketball staff like no other time under Lorenzo Romar.

Longtime assistants Paul Fortier and Jim Shaw will not be back with the Huskies, the school announced Wednesday.

A shift was anticipated after Washington hired assistants T.J. Otzelberger from Iowa State and re-hired Raphael Chillious from Villanova during the offseason. Each received two-year deals through March 31, 2015.

Chillious spent three seasons on UW’s staff (2010-12) before serving as an assistant to Jay Wright in 2013. Otzelberger had been at Iowa State since 2010. They are the new blood.

The departure of Fortier, who played for Washington from 1983-86, and Shaw allows Washington to flip the age of its staff, plus the recruiting faces. Otzelberger will be the recruiting coordinator. Chillious, who has extensive Nike ties, also will be heavily involved in recruiting, in addition to coaching the guards. Both coaches are in their 30s.

Shaw led recruiting efforts in addition to scheduling in his nine years at Washington. Fortier worked with the big men before becoming director of player personnel and development last season, taking him off the practice floor in his eighth season on staff.

Fortier is expected to latch on with another school. Shaw will be looking for work.

Brad Jackson, hired last season from Western Washington, will remain on staff. He will lead the scouting of opponents.

Washington also hired Daniel Shapiro as the new basketball strength and conditioning coach. Shapiro worked the past eight years for the Sacramento Kings.

The Huskies have missed the NCAA tournament in back-to-back seasons. They also have lost several high-end recruiting battles at the end. The most recent example was five-star recruit Aaron Gordon picking Arizona over Washington and Oregon two months ago. UNLV transfer Mike Moser picked Oregon over Washington shortly after. In the past, players such as Terrence Jones, Enes Kanter, Josh Smith and even DeMarcus Cousins all chose to go elsewhere at the last minute.

As disconcerting as those recruiting losses might have been, there also were victories. Highly rated players such as Jon Brockman, Spencer Hawes, Isaiah Thomas, Abdul Gaddy, Quincy Pondexter and Tony Wroten joined the program. Also, Shaw was responsible for finding C.J. Wilcox, last season’s leading scorer and an NBA prospect.

In 2012, the Huskies (24-11) became the first Pacific-12 Conference regular-season champion to be snubbed for the NCAA tournament. The Huskies followed with a meandering 18-16 campaign last season. Only twice in Romar’s 12 years at the school did the Huskies win fewer games.

Now, a new staff is in place and UW hopes to improve at sealing commitments with the expectation that wins will follow. @Todd_Dybas

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