Juwan Howard Has Happy Chicago Homecoming

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Chicago native and first year Michigan Wolverines head coach Juwan Howard said it was a “great feeling” to see all the maize and blue in Welsh-Ryan Arena last night when his team demolished the Northwestern Wildcats 78-54.

The Chicago Vocational School grad flew in, led his team to a very lopsided victory and flew out just as NBA All-Star Game weekend festivities get going. Howard said it was awesome to see Dikembe Mutumbo, who he described as one of one of his all-time favorite former teammates, and other close friends and family behind the bench in the stands last night.

Howard said he was excited to be home as soon as he stepped off the airplane.

“Something about Chicago air, I love Chicago, it’s where I grew up, once I got off the plane I smelled it ahh!”

He’s been back here many times as a player and assistant coach, but this was the first time he was here in a head coaching role.

Northwestern win A.J. Turner is from Michigan, so he grew up watching the former Fab 5 star in the pros.

“My dad was a fan of his so obviously you have a lot of respect for a guy like that,” said Turner.

“I tried to model some of my game after him,” said Northwestern forward Jared Jones, adding that he also grew up watching Juwan Howard.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link

 

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