Villanova's Jay Wright Named AP Men's Coach of Decade After 2 National Titles

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2020

Villanova's Jay Wright coaches during an NCAA college basketball game against Kansas, Saturday, Dec. 21, 2019, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

Two national championships in a span of three years helped Villanova coach Jay Wright earn the title of Associated Press men's college basketball coach of the decade, per the AP's John Marshall

Wright earned 16 of 24 votes to earn the honor ahead of Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski who collected five. The only other coaches with votes were Mark Few of Gonzaga, John Calipari of Kentucky and Tony Bennett of Virginia.

Krzyzewski also won two titles this decade in 2010 and 2015. The only other program with multiple titles was Connecticut, although one team was led by Jim Calhoun and the other had Kevin Ollie at the helm.

Still, Wright has turned Villanova into one of the most consistent programs in the country with five regular-season Big East titles and four conference tournament championships in the last six years. The squad has been a No. 1 or No. 2 seed in March Madness in five of those seasons.

After a few years of early exits in the NCAA tournament, he finally broke through with a pair of championships in 2016 and 2018, including a thrilling 2016 win over North Carolina.

"Jay Wright's resume speaks for itself with two national titles in the 2010s," ESPN analyst Dick Vitale said of his vote. "He has developed a consistent winner and has enjoyed success on and off the court. He has a special winner's mentality."

With four Big East Coach of the Year awards this decade along with the pari of national titles, Wright was a clear pick as the top coach in the 2010s.

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