ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Make it three out of five -- the Fab Five.
Jimmy King joined Jalen Rose and Chris Webber in throwing his support behind their former teammate, Miami Heat assistant coach Juwan Howard, to become the next Michigan men's basketball coach.
"Absolutely," King said Saturday while attending third annual Champions for Change Gala at Crisler Center to benefit the ChadTough Foundation. "So you've got three and I'm sure you'll get all five.
"I think Juwan Howard is obviously one of the best candidates for the Michigan job. I think his pedigree speaks for itself. I think his experience in high school being an All-American, be an All-American in college at his alma mater at the University of Michigan matters. And being a champion at the pro level and being a coach over the past few seasons speaks for his pedigree. I think he's one of the best candidates the university can have."
Rose and former U-M player Mark Hughes kicked off Howard's candidacy on Thursday as the school looks for a replacement for John Beilein, who left to become the Cleveland Cavaliers' coach. Chris Webber threw his support to Howard on Friday.
Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel was not available to speak with reporters. Multiple sources have told the Free Press that Howard, 43, and Butler coach LaVall Jordan, 40, are on Manuel's list of candidates.
Whoever becomes the Wolverines' next coach will have the challenge of trying to meet Beilein's high standard.
"I think it's great and that's what you want," King said. "I think Juwan is the guy who can pick up the torch and carry it even further.
"John Beilein had a great career here, 12 (years), two Final Fouls, four Big Ten championships, numerous NBA players and lottery picks. So the next person who comes in, in my opinion, has to at least keep the status quo and at the very best level let it grow and keep it growing."
Beilein and his wife, Kathleen, were co-chairs of Saturday's gala. But the coach declined comment on any basketball matters.