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When North Carolina announced Thursday that legendary coach Roy Williams is retiring, the tributes began pouring in from all over the basketball world. The 70-year-old Williams won three national titles at UNC, his alma mater, and also reached four Final Fours during a 15-year run at Kansas.

Prior to his run with the Jayhawks, he was an assistant under Dean Smith at North Carolina for a decade. During that time, he recruited and helped coach a player by the name of Michael Jordan. Arguably the greatest player of all-time, Jordan has maintained his relationship with Williams over the years.

Roy Williams retires at UNC, Chris Beard hired at Texas. Emergency episode of Eye on College Basketball is here.

"To choose your own path, to walk away from the game when he wants," Jordan said in an exclusive interview with the Charlotte Observer. "It's great he now gets to spend more time with his children and grandchildren.

"I'm sad that he's leaving because he has meant so much to basketball," Jordan added. "He and my father formed an unbelievable bond that meant so much to me."

Though Jordan is the most high-profile of Williams' former players, he is just one of hundreds who were impacted by his career. Here is a look at some of other tributes pouring in as Williams departs from college basketball, starting with one from UNC's bitter rival.

UNC players

Former players