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Corliss Williamson heading back to Sacto

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CONWAY, Ark. (AP) - Corliss Williamson is returning to the NBA, this time as an assistant coach for the Sacramento Kings.

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Williamson, who was drafted by the Kings with the 13th overall pick in 1995, spent the last three seasons as the head coach at Central Arkansas.

``I honestly couldn't see myself leaving for any situation other than an opportunity to go back to Sacramento,'' Williamson said in a statement released by the school. ``It's a place where I cut my teeth as a rookie in the NBA, spent over half of my career there. It's an area that reminds me a lot of Arkansas, with the people, the fans they have there. It's just a great opportunity that I have now to return there and be able to coach at the highest level.''

The former All-American at Arkansas spent three seasons coaching at Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock before that. His return to the NBA was first reported by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper.

Williamson played for 12 seasons in the NBA, retiring in 2007. He played for the Kings from 1995-2000 and 2005-07. The Russellville, Ark., native won an NBA championship while with Detroit in 2004, and he was the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year while with the Pistons from 2001-02.

Central Arkansas athletic director Brad Teague said associate head coach Clarence Finley would take over the Bears on an interim basis for the upcoming season, with the program seeking a long-term hire after the 2013-14 season.

Williamson took over UCA in 2010, finishing 26-62 in three seasons. His final team finished 13-17, the school's second-highest win total since moving to Division I in 2006, and was 7-11 in the Southland Conference.

``His hard work is now showing in the level of talent and character his student-athletes bring to our program,'' Teague said. ``We appreciate all he has done for UCA basketball to lay a foundation for future success. The Sacramento Kings will now have a valuable coaching assistant for their team and community. I know Corliss will contribute greatly to their success and we wish him well.

AP NEWS
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The Associated Press
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