3 ways John Beilein will change up the Cleveland Cavaliers

Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)
Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/NCAA Photos via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Few thought John Beilein was even on the Cleveland Cavaliers’ short list for head coach a week ago. How will the new hire impact the team’s development?

The Cleveland Cavaliers traversed the country last week interviewing potential head coaches. Cavs leadership touched down in Denver to chat with Nuggets assistant coach Jordi Fernandez and Portland Trail Blazers assistant Nate Tibbetts. A slew of coaches traveled to Cleveland to explain why they’d be the best fit for the young squad. 

In the end, the Cavs selected the 66-year-old John Beilein, the head coach at the University of Michigan. It was a move few saw coming.

The connection to Cleveland, however, makes sense. Cavs owner Dan Gilbert is a Detroit native and fan of Michigan basketball. He even tried to coax Michigan State’s Tom Izzo to head the Cavs in 2010. Now, he’s booked probably the state’s second-most popular coach on the payroll.

Then there was a wedding in 2014 that originally connected Beilein to the Cavaliers. Cleveland.com reports the Michigan coach connected with now-Cavaliers general manager Koby Altman at a wedding for a front office employee,

Is he the right fit for the team? New NBA hires, especially from the collegiate level, are usually younger (Brad Stevens, Fred Hoiberg, Billy Donovan). Beilein has been coaching college hoops twice as long as Collin Sexton has been alive.

But he’s done well with teens at the college level for years. The proven winner has back-to-back Big Ten titles under his belt and four Final Four appearances in the past six years — and that’s while coaching a team that usually misses out on blue chip recruits and isn’t even the prime destination for young talent in its own state.

Tactically, he’s a mastermind and stellar at developing young talent. But does his style translate to the pros? Here are a few things to consider as Beilein readies to change up the Cavs.