He is a retired American basketball coach. He gained notoriety for succeeding Dean Smith as head basketball coach at the
North Carolina in 1997, after serving for 30 years as Smith's assistant. He coached the Tar Heels for three seasons before retiring in 2000.
In his three seasons as head coach he led the Tar Heels to the NCAA Final Four twice, in the 1998 tournament and again in the 2000 tournament. In 1998, he inherited a team that had been to the 1997 Final Four the previous year under Coach Smith.
Bill Guthridge coached that team to the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament championship, a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, and to the National Semifinal game, where they lost to Utah. Following the 1997-1998 season several organizations named him National Coach of the Year and he received the Naismith College Coach of the Year award.
The next season, the team earned a #3 seed in the 1999 NCAA tournament, but was upset in the first round by Weber State. In 2000, the team struggled in the regular season, but came alive at tournament time. They earned only a #8 seed, after an 18-13 record, but upset top-seeded Stanford in the second round and continued on to the National Semifinal game, where they lost to Florida. After the 2000 season, he retired from coaching.