Oldest Coaches To Win Championships

Paul SwaneySenior Analyst IApril 1, 2009

GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 28:  Head Coach Jim Calhoun of the Connecticut Huskies adjusts his team against the Missouri Tigers in the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament at the University of Phoenix Stadium on March 28, 2009 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Jim Calhoun is in position to be the oldest man to lead his team to an NCAA basketball championship if Connecticut can get by Michigan State on Saturday, and the UNC/Villanova winner on Monday.

Here's a look at the pantheon of great coaches currently holding the record for oldest in their sport to win a championship.

NCAA Basketball- Phog Allen, Kansas, Age 66

Allen played under basketball inventor James Naismith, and in his 39 years at Kansas he won three National Championships. In 1952, he was 66 years old when he led the Jayhawks to the title over St. John's. More importantly, Allen is the father of March Madness, as it was his idea to have an NCAA tournament during this time of year.

NBA- Larry Brown, Detroit Pistons, Age 63

Continuing the Kansas theme, Larry Brown is the only coach to win both an NCAA title (Kansas, 1988) and NBA title as head coach, but he is also the oldest coach to win an NBA title.

Brown led the Pistons to the 2004 NBA title over the Lakers. Brown is perhaps the most well-traveled coach ever, having won over 2000 games in the NBA, ABA, and NCAA.

NCAA Football- Bobby Bowden, Florida State, Age 69

Not a surprise. Bobby Bowden won his last National Championship in 1999 after winning the Sugar Bowl versus Virginia Tech. A decade later, he's still coaching (or at least has the job title of head coach) and chases Joe Paterno on the all-time wins list.

NFL- George Halas, Chicago Bears, Age 68

Although Dick Vermeil is the oldest coach to win a Super Bowl (age 63 when the Rams edged the Titans in Super Bowl XLII), no coach in NFL history was older at the time of a championship than George "Papa Bear" Halas.

The year 1963 saw the Bears defeat the Giants at Wrigley Field, winning their first championship since 1946. Halas also holds the distinction as the oldest to coach in the NFL, coaching his last game at age 72.

NHL- Scotty Bowman, Detroit Red Wings, Age 68

Bowman won the last of his record nine Stanley Cups as head coach in 2002. Following the game, Bowman skated around the ice with the cup capping off his retirement with a record 1244 wins.

MLB- Jack McKeon, Florida Marlins, Age 72

The true old man of the group, McKeon won the 2003 World Series with the Florida Marlins. He took over after the managerial reigns, beginning the 39th game of the season and replaced Jeff Torborg. McKeon would go on to coach two more years, retiring at age 74.