Michigan's head coaching search is starting to pick up steam — and a new candidate along the way.
Providence's Ed Cooley met with athletic director Warde Manuel and interviewed for the vacant position on Monday, according to a source with knowledge of the search.
A source also said Manuel plans to interview former Michigan standout and current Miami Heat assistant Juwan Howard on Tuesday.
Cooley, 49, has 13 years of head coaching experience at Fairfield and Providence, where he has spent the last eight seasons. He has a record of 162-110 with the Friars and has led them to seven consecutive winning seasons.
Cooley guided Providence to the Big East tournament title during the 2013-14 season, which started a string of five consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. However, the Friars have never finished better than third in the Big East and have only made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament once under Cooley.
Cooley and his wife, Nurys, both have strong ties to Rhode Island. Nurys is a former Providence police officer and Ed is a native of the city.
Cooley signed a long-term extension with Providence in 2016 that would run at least 10 years, according to the Providence Journal (as a private college, Providence is not required to reveal details of the deal and Cooley's buyout is not publicly known). He was paid $2.6 million this past season, which ranked No. 36 in the nation, per USA Today's coaching salary database.
Turnkey Sports is assisting in Michigan's search to replace John Beilein, who left last week to become the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, and Gene DeFilippo leads the search firm's intercollegiate athletics division. DeFilippo was the athletic director at Boston College when Cooley was an assistant coach under Al Skinner.
Howard, 46, has spent the past six seasons on Erik Spoelstra’s staff following his 19-year career in the NBA. Despite having no experience as a head coach at the college or pro level, Howard has received endorsements from former Fab Five teammates Jalen Rose and Jimmy King.
In addition to Cooley and Howard, a source said Michigan assistants Luke Yaklich and Saddi Washington spoke with Manuel last week and a new coach could be named by the end of the week.
Butler's LaVall Jordan, who was an assistant on Beilein's staff for six seasons, and Texas' Shaka Smart are considered candidates, but it's unclear whether either will be interviewed.