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Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra make statements about Juwan Howard heading to Michigan

A couple endorsements coming out of south Florida

Los Angeles Lakers v Miami Heat Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Miami Heat president Pat Riley and head coach Erik Spoelstra both know a thing or two about what it takes to become a champion.

Following Heat assistant coach Juwan Howard’s decision to become the head coach for the University of Michigan, Riley and Spoelstra made statements about Howard, who has been a part of the Heat organization as a player and a coach since 2010.

“He is going back to a school and a conference in which he is revered,” Riley said. “I think it’s a great step forward for him and the University, and I wish him nothing but the best, because that’s what he’s given us.”

Howard coached for the Heat for six seasons, and became the go-to coach to develop the bigs on the team.

“Juwan is an absolute star as a person, player and coach,” Spoelstra said. “I feel he is more than ready. He is a terrific leader and mentor, which translates very well to the collegiate level.”

Howard has earned his stripes as an assistant, and is now back at his alma mater with a lot to prove, and it never hurts when two men with multiple NBA Championship rings are in your corner.