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 Tuesday, July 11
Karl pulled out because of Bucks
 Associated Press

ST. FRANCIS, Wis. -- George Karl expressed frustration Tuesday that the Milwaukee Bucks didn't give him a chance to pursue the coaching vacancy at North Carolina, his alma mater.

Karl, who called the position his "dream job," said he withdrew his name from consideration at UNC when the Bucks denied him permission to talk to the Tar Heels.

North Carolina hired Matt Doherty as coach Tuesday.

"I can't deny that my heart is very much in Carolina," Milwaukee's coach said Tuesday at the Bucks' suburban practice center. "It was a weekend of a lot of feelings and a lot of dreams."

Later Tuesday, Karl wore a North Carolina cap as he played golf at a charity event for the Greater Milwaukee Open.

Karl spent a weekend trying to convince the Bucks' owner, Sen. Herb Kohl, D-Wis., to let him have more serious talks than an informal chat with former coach Dean Smith, Karl's mentor.

Kohl, who signed Karl to a four-year, $20 million deal in 1998, turned Karl down, the coach said.

"I'm not going to sit here and deny that I wish I had more freedom," Karl said. "Analyzing it, I probably would have done the same thing the senator did, but that doesn't mean I'm happy with the decision."

It's the first sign of conflict between Karl and Kohl, who have had a harmonious relationship in their two years together. Karl's contract has no buyout clause, meaning he needed permission to speak to another organization about a job.

A message The Associated Press left Tuesday at Kohl's Washington office was not immediately returned.

"I'm sure he's not totally happy with me," Karl said. "I'm not sure he understands the lure that place has for (alumni)."

Bucks general manager Ernie Grunfeld mediated the discussions between Karl and Kohl. Grunfeld characterized the decision as "mutual."

"This is the nature of the business," Grunfeld said. "We're happy we have a coach that's so well-regarded."

Karl, a 1973 graduate of North Carolina, has 13 years of NBA coaching experience. He has never held a college coaching job.

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 George Karl would have liked to find out more about the UNC coaching job.
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 Karl still bleeds 'Carolina Blue.'
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 Ernie Grunfeld is happy that George Karl will be staying with the Bucks.
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