William John Donovan Jr. is a professional basketball coach named the Head Coach of the Chicago Bulls in 2020. He was was formerly the head coach for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He previously spent 19 seasons at the University of Florida, where his Florida Gators teams won back-to-back NCAA championships in 2006 and 2007. Donovan has more wins than any other coach in the history of the Florida basketball program, and he coached the Gators to more NCAA tournament appearances, NCAA tournament wins, and Southeastern Conference (SEC) championships than all other Florida coaches combined.
Donovan was born and raised in Rockville Centre on Long Island, New York. As the starting point guard for Rick Pitino's Providence team, Donovan led the Friars to the 1987 Final Four. As such, he is one of only four men (Dean Smith, Joe B. Hall and Bobby Knight being the others) to appear in the NCAA Final Four as a player and win the NCAA national championship as a coach.
Before his tenure at Florida, Donovan spent most of the 1987–88 season as a reserve guard for the National Basketball Association's New York Knicks, who at the time were coached by his college coach, Rick Pitino. After leaving the NBA and briefly working as a Wall Street stock broker, Donovan followed Pitino to the University of Kentucky, where he served as an assistant coach for the Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball from 1989 to 1993. He accepted his first head coaching position at Marshall University in 1994 and led the Thundering Herd to a 35-20 record over two seasons.
Donovan was hired to revive Florida's basketball program in 1996. After two losing seasons while he rebuilt the roster through relentless recruiting, Donovan's Gators began a streak of sixteen straight 20-win seasons, a period which included multiple conference championships, four Final Four appearances, two NCAA championships, and three SEC coach of the year awards.
During Donovan's tenure at Florida, he was often rumored to be a candidate for various NCAA and NBA head coaching positions. In June 2007, after leading the Gators to their second consecutive national title, he accepted an offer to become the head coach of the NBA's Orlando Magic. However, he immediately had second thoughts, and after a week, he persuaded the Magic to release him from his newly signed contract and allow him to return to Florida, where he remained for eight more seasons.
In April 2015, Donovan agreed to become the head coach of the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder.
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Billy Donovan is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics including Basketball, Coaching (Sports) and Personal Growth. The estimated speaking fee range to book Billy Donovan for live events is $30,000 - $50,000. Please contact us for virtual event fees. Billy Donovan generally travels from Oklahoma, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are John Calipari, Pat Williams and Bill Walton. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Billy Donovan for an upcoming event.
The Chicago Bulls hired Billy Donovan as their coach Tuesday, landing one of the top candidates on the market to lead a rebuilding team with an overhauled front office.
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