College Basketball 2011: Top 10 College Basketball Coaches in Their 50s
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There's no doubt about it...some of college's best basketball coaches are guys in their 50's...Sideline leaders who have been through hundreds and hundreds of games and are still at it!
The following is a list of the Top 10 College Basketball Coaches in their 50's.
Some of these coaches, if you include their years as assistant coaches, have been at it for almost four decades.
That's a lot of time invested in game-planning, film-watching, and game-time decision-making.
You might be interested in the companion piece to this....College Basketball 2011: Top 10 College Basketball Coaches in Their 40's
Before you look at this slideshow, see how many of the Top Ten list that you can name!
10. Mike Anderson: Arkansas
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Mike Anderson has made a name for himself in rebuilding college basketball programs.
After serving as an assistant coach for twenty years (three years at Tulsa and seventeen at Arkansas) under Nolan Richardson, Anderson became the head coach at Alabama-Birmingham in 2002.
At UAB, Anderson posted a record of 89-41 making it to the post-season all four years, including advancing to the Sweet Sixteen in 2003-04.
In 2006, he was hired to get Missouri back on track. Success at Mizzou didn't happen instantly. The Tigers fell short of 20 wins in Anderson's first two seasons.
But in his third season, Anderson's "Fastest 40 Minutes in Basketball" kicked into full gear, winning 31 games and making it to the Elite Eight.
Overall Anderson has a 200-98 record.
This spring, Anderson returned to Arkansas, with his whole staff intact, ready to help the Razorbacks challenge for the SEC title.
9. Rick Byrd: Belmont
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Rick Byrd is probably the least known coach in this list and yet he is one of five active NCAA coaches to have 500 wins at one school.
At Belmont University, located in Nashville, Byrd is 518-278 over the course of 25 seasons.
Bird is also one of 11 active coaches to have more than 600 career wins.
His overall college coaching record is 610-333...just shy of coaching 1000 college basketball games. Unbelievable!
This past season was Byrd's best with the Bruins going 30-5 overall and 19-1 in the Atlantic Sun Conference. Belmont won the regular season conference title, and won the A-Sun Tournament Championship by 41 points.
8. Mike Brey: Notre Dame
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Its not always easy to build a top-level basketball program at a college that is known as one of the most storied football school's in the country.
Mike Brey has done a fantastic job at doing just that at Notre Dame.
Brey's overall coaching record is 337-172, with 11 20-win seasons. Before taking the ND job in 2000, Brey posted a 99-52 record in five seasons at Delaware.
In eleven years at Notre Dame, Brey has compiled a 238-120 record, qualifying for post-season play every season.
He has been named the Big East Coach of the Year three times (2007, 2008, 2011), and was selected as the Skip Prosser Man of the Year Award winner for 2008.
This past season was Brey's career best, going 27-7, which paved the way for him to win multiple, national Coach of the Year Awards (AP, Henry Iba Award, CBS Sports.com, Sports Illustrated).
7. Stew Morrill: Utah State
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Stew Morrill is another example (along with Rick Byrd) of a great coach who operates most of the time outside of the national media spotlight.
Morrill's overall record of 542-241 represents a quarter of a century of coaching excellence.
After serving as Mike Montgomery's assistant at Montana for eight seasons, Morrill was hired as the Grizzlies head coach where he posted a 97-52 record.
From 1991-98, Morrill led the Colorado State program to a 121-86 mark.
From 1998 until present, Morrill has been coaching at Utah State where he is 324-103 in 13 seasons.
In those 13 seasons, USU has qualified for post-season play in all but Morrill's first season.
Other than his first season in Logan, the Aggies have won at least 23 games in every season under Morrill.
He was named the Big Sky Coach of the Year in 1991, the Big West Coach of the Year in 2000 and 2002, and the WAC Coach of the Year for the last three years running (2009-11).
6. Ben Howland: UCLA
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Ben Howland knows what it's like to coach at a school with very high basketball expectations.
UCLA is, of course, where John Wooden performed his magic decades ago.
Howland is one of only three active coaches (along with Tom Izzo and Mike Krzyzewski) to lead his team to three consecutive Final Fours.
After one year as an assistant coach at Gonzaga and an additional 12 years as an assistant coach at UC Santa Barbara, Howland was hired as the head coach at Northern Arizona where he led the Lumberjacks to a 79-59 record.
In 1999, Howland was selected as the head coach at Pittsurgh (89-40 record in four seasons).
In 2003, after the departure of Steve Lavin, Howland went to revitalize the legendary UCLA program.
In eight seasons, Howland has put up a 189-83 record, with three trips to the Final Four.
Howland has won the Big Sky Coach of the Year (1997), the Big East Coach of the Year (2002) and the Pac-10 Coach of the Year (2006). and was named the 2002 Naismith College Coach of the Year.
5. Rick Barnes: Texas
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Rick Barnes has built one of the best college basketball programs in the country at Texas.
But even before he got things rolling in Austin, Barnes had great success at his other head coaching stops.
After eight years as an assistant coach, Barnes coached one year at George Mason where he posted a 20-10 record and won the Colonial Athletic Association Coach of the Year.
In 1988, Barnes moved on to Providence where he compiled a 108-76 record and helped the Friars get to the post-season five of six seasons.
In 1994, he took over the head coaching position at Clemson. In four years, Barnes put up a 74-38 record with the Tigers going to the post-season all four seasons.
And, in 1998, Barnes was selected as the head coach at UT.
In thirteen years under Barnes' leadership, the Longhorns have gone 322-123 and made it to the NCAA tournament in all but his first year, going to the Sweet Sixteen twice, the Elite Eight twice and the Final Four once.
Barnes has won the Big 12 Coach of the Year three times (1999, 2003, and 2008).
4. Bob Huggins: West Virginia
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Bob Huggins ranks fourth in victories (690-251) and eighth in winning percentage (73.3 percent) among active Division 1 coaches.
Huggins is one of six D1 coaches with at least 600 wins. His teams have participated in the post-season 25 of 28 seasons.
He started his head coaching career at NAIA's Walsh University where he compiled a 71-26 record over three years.
After serving a single season as an assistant coach at Central Florida, Huggins was named the head coach in 1984 at Akron. In five seasons, he led the Zips to a 97-46 mark.
From there, Huggins moved onto Cincinnati where he stayed for 16 seasons, putting up a record of 399-127, winning the conference championship ten times.
Huggins took the Bearcats to post-season play every season, including a trip to the Sweet Sixteen, twice to the Elite Eight and once to the Final Four.
After a year out of coaching in 2005-06, Huggins resurfaced at Kansas State for a single season in which the Wildcats posted a 23-12 record.
And things came full circle for Huggins in 2007, when he returned to his alma mater to coach West Virginia.
In four years at UWVa, Huggins has a 101-42 record, taking the Mountaineers to the NCAA tournament every year, including a trip to the Sweet Sixteen and the Final Four.
3. John Calipari: Kentucky
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Wherever John Calipari goes, there is action.
Calipari has taken three schools to the Final Four (UMass 1996; Memphis 2008; and Kentucky 2011) AND is the only head coach to have a Final Four appearance vacated at more than one school (though he was not personally implicated in the investigation at either UMass or Memphis.
Calipari has compiled a college coaching career record of 467-151 for a 75.5 winning percentage. This record is what the NCAA currently recognizes.
His first year at UMass (88-89) was the only season that one of his teams didn't make the post-season.
His record at UMass was 195-71 in eight seasons, at Memphis was 252-69 in nine seasons, and in his two seasons at Kentucky has been 64-12.
Calipari was selected as the Naismith Coach of the Year in both 1996 and 2008.
2. Tom Izzo: Michigan State
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Tom Izzo has only been the head coach at one school: Michigan State. He has been on the Spartans' sideline since 1995.
In those 16 seasons, Izzo has posted a 383-161 record (70.4 percent), taking MSU to the post-season every year,
Izzo has led the Spartans to the 2000 NCAA National Championship, the 2009 NCAA National Championship Game, six Final Fours, and six Big Ten Championships.
Izzo was selected as the Big Ten Coach of the Year in both 1998 and 2009.
He was also named the AP National Coach of the year in 1998.
Five of Izzo's former assistant coaches are current Division 1 basketball coaches: Tom Crean, Indiana; Brian Gregory, Georgia Tech; Stan Heath, University of South Florida; Mark Montgomery, Northern Illinois; and Doug Wojcik,Tulsa.
1. Rick Pitino: Louisville
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Rick Pitino is the best of the college basketball coaches who are in their fifties.
He has been a college head coach at four schools (Boston University (1978–1983), Providence (1985–1987), Kentucky (1989–1997), Louisville (2001–present) over 25 years.
Pitino is currently three victories shy of 600 career wins with a career winning percentage of 73.1 percent (597-220).
His teams have made it to five Final Fours (1987, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2005) and he won an NCAA Championship at Kentucky in 1996.
Pitino was the first coach in NCAA history to lead three different schools (Providence, Kentucky, and Louisville) to a Final Four.
He was selected as the SEC Coach of the Year three times (1990, 1991, and 1996) and the John Wooden National Coach of the Year in 1987.