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Former Colorado star Chauncey Billups led the Buffs to a memorable first-round NCAA tourney win against Indiana at the end of the 1996-97 season.
Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer
Former Colorado star Chauncey Billups led the Buffs to a memorable first-round NCAA tourney win against Indiana at the end of the 1996-97 season.
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Mr. Big Shot is headed to Rip City.

Chauncey Billups on Sunday night was announced as the new head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers, replacing Terry Stotts, who mutually parted ways with the club on June 4.

Billups, 44, spent the 2020-21 season as an assistant coach with the Clippers.

“Chauncey is a proven leader with an elite basketball IQ that has won everywhere he has been,” Blazers president of basketball operations Neil Olshey said in a news release. “He is prepared for the challenge of developing the Championship habits and strategic approach we need to achieve the expectations and goals for our franchise.”

Billups, a Denver native, starred at George Washington High School and the University of Colorado before he was drafted by the Boston Celtics with the third overall pick in the 1997 NBA draft. He played 17 seasons in the league and was named the NBA Finals MVP in 2004 after leading Detroit to a championship. He also played for the Raptors, Nuggets, Timberwolves, Knicks and Clippers.

Billups played at Colorado from 195-97. The guard averaged 18.5 points, 5.1 assists, and 5.6 rebounds per game over his two seasons. During the 1996-97 season, Billups was named second-team All-American and led the Buffs to their first NCAA tournament appearance in 28 years. The No. 9 seed Buffs upset No. 8 Indiana in the first but lost to North Carolina in the second round.