College Basketball: 7 CBB Coaches Looking to Build on Their First-Year Success
College basketball coaches in the first year of their first head coaching jobs usually are paying their dues and taking their lumps.
They have decided that they are ready to cross over from being an assistant to running their own program.
And usually, that means going through some tough times up front.
- Coach K went 11-14 in his first year at West Point.
- John Calipari put up an mediocre 11-18 in his first go-round at UMass.
- Bill Self was an awful(!) 6-21 in the 93-94 season at ORU.
But not everyone starts off this way.
Here is a list of seven CBB coaches that successfully finished off their initial season as "The Man" and are looking to build off of that success
Archie Miller (Dayton)
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It was only a matter of time before Archie Miller (daytonflyers.com) launched out and became a college head coach.
After playing PG at North Carolina State, Miller served on the staff's of several major D-1 programs, including Western Kentucky, NC State, Arizona State and Ohio State, before teaming up with his older brother Sean at Arizona.
Miller's first year at Dayton was solid (20-13; 9-7 Atlantic 10) with a trip to the NIT.
The Flyers should be competitive in the A-10 with rising senior PG Kevin Dillard (13.3 ppg; 6 apg) returning and a nice 2012 recruiting class arriving.
Mitch Henderson (Princeton)
Mitch Henderson was a four-year starter at Princeton.
He followed that up by logging an 11-year run as a Northwestern assistant coach under Bill Carmody (his college coach) before returning to his alma mater last year to lead the Tigers to a 20-12 record this past season.
Henderson is likely to keep things going this coming year with his leading scorer and rebounder, Ian Hunter (16.1 ppg; 7.1 rpg), returning, as well as seven of the nine players in the Tigers rotation.
Rob Senderoff (Kent State)
Rob Senderoff (Kentstatesports.com) was a natural choice to step in as the Kent State head coach a year ago.
He had contributed to the success of the program with two different stints (2002-06; 2008-11) as an assistant before being promoted to the head job.
Senderoff and the Golden Flashes posted a 21-12 overall record (10-6 MAC) with a trip to the 2012 College Insider Tournament (CIT).
He will have a slight challenge to sustain or build on his first year success, with three of his top five scorers and his top two rebounders graduating.
Don't count Senderoff out. He is an excellent floor coach who will get every last drop out of his 2012-13 squad.
Bryce Drew (Valparaiso)
Bryce Drew (Valpoathletics.com) is not only carrying on the family name, but also the coaching success of both his dad Homer (640-428) at Valpo and his brother Scott (174-135) at Baylor.
Bryce played for his dad and then coached with his dad before taking the program over last year.
Just like the rest of his family, Bryce looks like a natural pacing up and down the Crusader sidelines.
Valpo went 22-12 this past season and won the Horizon League regular season title before losing to Detroit in the conference tournament and then Miami (FL) in the opening round of the 2012 NIT.
The Crusaders will be back at the top of the HL in 2012-13 with their entire rotation returning, including Ryan Broekhoff, one of the most underrated SFs in the nation.
Steve Masiello (Manhattan)
He must've made a good impression on Pitino because Masiello served as an assistant at Louisville for six years before for taking the top spot at Manhattan a year ago.
Masiello led the Jaspers to a nice 21-13 record (12-6 in the Mid Atlantic Athletic Conference) and into the second round of the CIT.
Watch out for Manhattan in 2012-13. The Jaspers return their top three scorers, including George Beamon, the MAAC's 2011-12 leading scorer (19 ppg).
Dave Rice (UNLV)
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Talkin' about hitting the jackpot!
Dave Rice (unlvrebels.com) took over the Rebels program and didn't miss a beat.
UNLV went 26-9 (9-6 in the Mountain West) and made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in Rice's first year.
Not only does he have Mike Moser and the core of last year's team returning, Rice has brought in an outstanding 2012 recruiting class, with also two elite-level transfers (Bryce Jones and Khem Birch) coming on board.
Look for UNLV to be one of the best CBB teams in the west!
Steve Prohm (Murray State)
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Very few coaches have had as much immediate success as Steve Prohm (goracers.com) did in his first year at Murray State.
MSU went a school record-tying 31-2, won the Ohio Valley Conference with a record of 15-1 and ended up the 2011-12 season ranked No. 16 in the country.
Prohm and his Racers are likely to have another huge year in 2012-13, with Isaiah Canaan, one of the top guards in the nation, and senior forward Edward Daniels returning.