The timing of this announcement is very coincidental, as it comes on the same day that the Cleveland Cavaliers introduced their new head coach, John Beilein, who left Michigan for the NBA. Beilein spent 12 seasons with the Wolverines, including two National Championship Game appearances, but no victories.
Howard, along with Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, Jimmy King, and Ray Jackson won two National Championships with the Wolverines as a player, along with another Elite Eight appearance. During his three seasons at Michigan, he averaged 15.3 points and 7.5 rebounds, before spending 19 seasons at the professional level. During that time, he was with eight different teams, but did make the All-Star team in 1996.
The now former assistant has worked under Erik Spoelstra his entire time with the Heat, with this being his first head coaching gig at any level. His name was also in the running for multiple NBA head coaching vacancies this off-season, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Los Angeles Lakers. He is now taking over a Michigan team that won 30 games this past season, but fell short against Michigan State multiple times, including in the NCAA Tournament. They are for sure losing star freshman Ignas Brazdeikis to the NBA Draft, with a couple others still undecided, including Jordan Poole and Charles Matthews. That being said, this season could be a nicely-sized first challenge at the head coaching position for Howard.