Ben Howland interested in job

Marquette has contacted former UCLA coach Ben Howland about replacing Buzz Williams, but the school has yet to offer him the job, sources confirmed to ESPN.com.

Multiple sources close to Howland told ESPN that he is "extremely interested" in the Marquette opening.

Howland, 56, took the Bruins to three consecutive Final Four appearances from 2006 to 2008 before being fired after the 2012-13 campaign. Howland sat out this past season, and has repeatedly said he'd like to get back into coaching.

Williams left Marquette after six seasons to take the Virginia Tech job last week, and Marquette has begun to reach out to candidates to gauge their level of interest. Sources told ESPN.com that Syracuse coach-in-waiting Mike Hopkins and former Marquette player and assistant Brian Wardle, who is currently the head coach at Green Bay, are also in the mix. Dayton's Archie Miller has also emerged as a candidate, according to sources.

Although the league has changed, Howland does have familiarity with the Big East. He coached Pittsburgh for four seasons before leaving for UCLA -- and took the Panthers to the Sweet 16 in each of his final two seasons.

Howland was extremely successful for much of his tenure at UCLA -- and compiled an overall mark of 233-107 in a decade with the Bruins -- but the program failed to advance past the second round of the NCAA tourney after the last of their Final Four runs under the coach in 2008 and failed to go to the tournament in 2010 and 2012.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel earlier reported that Marquette had reached out to Howland.