Billy Donovan coached Florida from 1996-2015.
Billy Donovan revealed that he felt depressed after leading the University of Florida to the second national championship of his tenure in Gainesville, he told reporters during a recent postgame interview.
The Oklahoma City Thunder head coach previously coached at Florida from 1996 to 2015 and led the Gators to back-to-back national championships in 2006 and '07.
“I was depressed. I lost total sight of what it’s all about,” Donovan said. “And I don’t mean what it’s all about in terms of what goes into winning, but the fact that it doesn’t change your life one bit, other than someone may write next to your name, ‘national champion coach.’ Outside of that, it does not change your life."
“And then what happens is you get to a place — and the first time it really resonated with me was I saw an interview on 60 Minutes with Tom Brady when I think the Patriots had won three of their five Super Bowls and after the third one he asked himself, ‘Is this what it’s all about?’" he added. "Because at the end of the day if it’s all about the ring and the trophy, you lose the most valuable thing, and it’s the group of people and the relationships that are established, of people working together to accomplish something they couldn’t accomplish on their own.”
Donovan's answer came in response to a question surrounding comments Michigan State coach Tom Izzo made about needing a second national championship victory to validate his career. Izzo's Spartans reached the Final Four, but lost to Texas Tech in the national semifinal round.