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NCAA Basketball: Ranking all 357 D-I head coaches for 2020-21 season
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MyBB NCAA Basketball: Ranking all 357 D-I head coaches for 2020-21 season

356. Bucky McMillan (Samford) (Last year: N/A)
Overall record: 0-0
There’s no disrespect here meant for McMillan, but he’ll begin his first year at Samford without any previous college coaching experience. He spent more than a decade coaching high school ball in Alabama with great success, but college is a different animal. McMillan faces an uphill battle in a tough SoCon and it’ll be interesting to see how he adjusts to the college game moving forward.

351. Mo Williams (Alabama State) (Last year: N/A)
Overall record: 0-0
Another former longtime NBA player heads to the SWAC, as Williams takes over Alabama State, having played his college ball nearby with the Crimson Tide two decades earlier. He did spend the last few seasons in college basketball, assisting at Cal State Northridge, but Williams is still a very fresh head coach. If he can recruit at a higher level, then that’ll be a solid hire, but it’s hard to stand out in a conference like the SWAC.

345. Dylan Howard (Alabama A&M) (Last year: 344)
Overall record: 13-49
While the record seems disappointing, Howard did actually improve the Bulldogs this past season. Their eight wins mark a three-game improvement, and the former junior college head coach is certainly trending in the right direction. Alabama A&M hasn’t made the NCAA Tournament since 2005, though finishing in the upper half of the conference might be a more reachable goal for Howard moving forward.

301. Tony Pujol (North Alabama) (Last year: 306)
Overall record: 23-39
As North Alabama joined D1 in 2018, they brought Pujol aboard to help make a quick impact with the program. The former VCU and Alabama assistant has had his work cut out for him, but is slowly making strides with the Lions. This past season ended with 13 wins and a 5th place finish in the Atlantic Sun, both good signs for North Alabama. The question remains if they can push to that next level in the coming seasons and come close to competing with Liberty.

244. Dusty May (Florida Atlantic) (Last year: 242)
Overall record: 34-31
May got his shot to run a program with Florida Atlantic in 2018, having spent the last seven years on Mike White’s staffs at Louisiana Tech and Florida. After helping White build something with the Gators, he’s taken the Owls to a pair of 17-win 9th place seasons in Conference USA. There’s plenty more to accomplish for May, but his head coaching career is off to a decent enough start.

241. Ron Sanchez (Charlotte) (Last year: 264)
Overall record: 24-34
Charlotte got a quality coach when Sanchez took the reins in 2018. He had spent the last 15 years working with Tony Bennett at both Washington State and Virginia, leaving one year prior to the Cavaliers’ national title run. He’s led the 49ers to a vast improvement, going from 8 to 16 wins in his first two seasons, paired with a 4th place finish in Conference USA.

208. Steve Henson (UTSA) (Last year: 190)
Overall record: 64-68
A longtime player and a longtime assistant under Lon Kruger, Henson got his shot to run a program when UTSA came calling in 2016. He led the Roadrunners to a CIT in 2018 and a 2nd place finish in Conference USA in 2019. While last season was a step backwards, Henson still has this UTSA team in competitive shape in a deep conference, having learned well from that decade-plus under Kruger.

184. Richie Riley (South Alabama) (Last year: 200)
Overall record: 72-56
Riley has risen pretty quickly through the coaching ranks in recent years, and his work at South Alabama continues to impress. A former assistant at schools like UAB and Clemson, he took Nicholls State to a Southland regular-season title in 2018 before leaving for the Jaguars. He led South Alabama to 20 wins and a second-place finish in the Sun Belt this past season, a major step forward based on the program he inherited.

183. Jeremy Ballard (Florida International) (Last year: 204)
Overall record: 39-27
Ballard’s head coaching career began when FIU brought him to Miami two seasons ago. A former assistant at Tulsa, Pittsburgh, and VCU, Ballard has a pair of solid seasons with the Panthers. Last year’s team won 19 games and tied for 6th place in Conference USA. There’s still a lot of work ahead to build a consistently competitive team, but he’s certainly brought stability and potential to the Panthers in these last few seasons.

180. Rodney Terry (UTEP) (Last year: 191)
Overall record: 151-144
After leading Fresno State to the NCAA Tournament in 2016, Terry took the chance to return to Texas by taking the UTEP job in 2018. A former Longhorns assistant, Terry has hard work ahead with the Miners but has already manufactured a 9-win improvement across his first two seasons in El Paso. He did fantastic work building Fresno State into a Mountain West contender, but we’ll see what’s in store for him with the Miners.

176. Scott Cross (Troy) (Last year: 169)
Overall record: 234-183
Cross was shocked by his firing by UT Arlington after playing and coaching there for more than two decades but is set to bounce back nicely at Troy. His first season with the Trojans was a struggle at 9-22, but he’s plenty familiar with the Sun Belt and should have Troy competitive in the league again in a few seasons.

175. Nick McDevitt (Middle Tennessee) (Last year: 139)
Overall record: 117-110
After a long stretch of success at UNC Asheville, including five years as head coach, McDevitt transitioned to Middle Tennessee in 2018. He took the Bulldogs to the NCAA Tournament in 2016 but is far away from repeating that with the Blue Raiders. He’s just 18-44 to this point at Middle Tennessee, a rough drop off from success under predecessor Kermit Davis.

154. Ray Harper (Jacksonville State) (Last year: 148)
Overall record: 169-120
While last season was a step back, Harper’s entire career has been quite impressive. He won national titles in the NAIA with Oklahoma City and D2 with Kentucky Wesleyan before leading Western Kentucky to a pair of surprise NCAA Tournament appearances. He’s been in Jacksonville since 2016 and led them to their own shocking bid in 2017. A 7th place finish last season is disappointing, but Harper still has time to keep making his mark on the game.

142. Eric Konkol (Louisiana Tech) (Last year: 156)
Overall record: 105-57
Konkol spent a great number of years under Jim Larranaga before starting his head coaching career at Louisiana Tech in 2015. His work with the Bulldogs has been solid, even if he’s yet to lead them to the NCAA Tournament. He’s won at least 22 games in three of his seasons, including last year’s 2nd place finish in Conference USA. Louisiana Tech is trending in the right direction and could be close to that breakthrough postseason success.

133. Dan D’Antoni (Marshall) (Last year: 131)
Overall record: 113-92
After a long high school coaching career and several stints under his brother on NBA staffs, D’Antoni returned to the college game as Marshall’s head coach in 2014. He led the Thundering Herd to an NCAA Tournament upset win over Wichita State in 2018 and won the CIT the following season as well. However you look at it, Marshall has been a much better and competitive program under D’Antoni’s leadership.

109. Jerod Haase (Stanford) (Last year: 107)
Overall record: 148-114
Haase got his start playing and coaching under Roy Williams and has done solid work running his own programs. He spent four seasons leading UAB, taking them to the NCAA Tournament and an upset win over 3-seed Iowa State back in 2015. Stanford came calling and his first four years with the Cardinal have been acceptable, though he’s still trying to lead the program back to postseason glory.

96. Jeff Jones (Old Dominion) (Last year: 93)
Overall record: 510-373
Jones once led Virginia to an Elite Eight and Sweet Sixteen as head coach, but now begins his eighth season leading Old Dominion. He took the job after taking American to a pair of Patriot League titles. His Monarchs made the NCAA Tournament in 2019 and have been competitive in the CAA during his tenure. However, last season’s squad finished just 13-19, leaving a lot of growth ahead in the coming years.

79. Andy Kennedy (UAB) (Last year: N/A)
Overall record: 266-169
After sitting out the last two seasons, Kennedy takes over at UAB, his alma mater, after previously spending 12 solid years at Ole Miss. He took the Rebels to a host of postseason bids and will be looking to produce similar results back home with the Blazers. UAB struggled last season, but Kennedy is a solid coach who can make them competitive in Conference USA again real soon.

75. Penny Hardaway (Memphis) (Last year: 78)
Overall record: 43-24
After a successful NBA career, Hardaway returned to the college game when he took over at native Memphis two seasons ago. He’s brought some incredible recruits to the Tigers, but it hasn’t paid off to this point. Memphis has finished 5th in the AAC in both seasons, and the loss of James Wiseman last season was a disappointing turn of events in Hardaway’s young coaching career. If he keeps recruiting at a high level, then he’ll be winning very soon.

60. Mike Anderson (St. John’s) (Last year: 52)
Overall record: 386-215
Anderson took over at St. John’s last season and already has nearly two decades of head coaching experience. He took UAB to the Sweet Sixteen and Missouri to the Elite Eight but failed to build success in eight years leading Arkansas, a program he had helped lead to their first national title nearly three decades ago as an assistant. In year one, the Red Storm went 17-15; a decent enough start as Anderson gets comfortable in New York.

54. Rick Stansbury (Western Kentucky) (Last year: 46)
Overall record: 375-218
After a long stint at Mississippi State, Stansbury returned to the college game four seasons ago at Western Kentucky and is still waiting for things to take off. He took the Bulldogs to six NCAA Tournament but is still looking for postseason success with the Hilltoppers, though he is 82-52 since joining the program. Recruiting has never been a problem for Stansbury, but can he coach his roster into a conference winner?

49. Kermit Davis (Mississippi) (Last year: 54)
Overall record: 438-268
Long before Davis succeeded at Middle Tennessee, he was formerly the head coach at Idaho and Texas A&M and a pretty good assistant as well. He took the Blue Raiders to back-to-back first-round upsets, including their shocking win over 2-seed Michigan State in 2016. He landed in the SEC two seasons ago and made a surprising impact in year one, leading the Rebels to the NCAA Tournament. Last season was a step back, but what will the future hold?

46. Nate Oats (Alabama) (Last year: 51)
Overall record: 112-58
Oats landed at Alabama last season after a highly successful four-year stint leading Buffalo. He took the Bulls to a pair of NCAA Tournament opening-round victories, the first two in program history, before jumping ship for the SEC. His Crimson Tide may have been just 16-15 last season, but with the recruitment battles Oats is winning, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them competing for conference titles in a few years.

19. Rick Pitino (Iona) (Last year: N/A)
Overall record: 770-271
Final Four in 1987, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2005, 2012*, 2013*
National championships in 1996, 2013*

Pitino is back in college basketball, taking over an Iona program that has been the MAAC’s best in recent years. Known for winning national titles at Kentucky and Louisville (vacated), Pitino also took Providence to the Final Four, spent time in the NBA as head coach, and will certainly raise questions after how his tenure ended with the Cardinals. He’s going to bring excitement and intrigue to an Iona team that will likely be regular favorites to represent the MAAC in the postseason.

18. Bruce Pearl (Auburn) (Last year: 17)
Overall record: 356-177
Final Four in 2019
Pearl’s coaching career has been jam-packed with success. He won a D2 title at Southern Indiana, took mid-major Milwaukee to the Sweet Sixteen, and built consistent success at Tennessee. Most impressively, he just took Auburn to their very first Final Four and has the Tigers in excellent position to contend on the national stage for years to come. Though it got him in trouble at Tennessee, he remains one of the more excellent recruiters in the game and has shown these last few seasons he is still a very capable on-court coach as well.
(This post was last modified: 10-13-2020 01:43 PM by WesternBlazer.)
10-13-2020 01:43 PM
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