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Apr
11
2012

Ranking the ACC Basketball Coaches

I’m kind of Petrinoed out at the moment. I think the rest of internet has it pretty well covered. Bold move by Arkansas, it showed that some schools are more interested in the integrity of their programs than just winning footballs games.

Now ask the question again if the Razorbacks go 7-6. I don’t envy Arkansas’s AD Jeff Long… he made a tough call.

Anyways I’d actually like discuss to some coaches that are still at their universities, as I rank the ACC’s basketball coaches.

1. Mike Krzyzewski, Duke

What I like:
Come on 4 National Titles, and one as recently as 2010. He’s also the all-time winningest coach in NCAA history with 927 victories and counting.

The next step:
I’m not sure there is really a next step career wise for Coach K. He’s done it all. I suppose other than the 2010 Championship team there have been some recent early exits in the NCAAs. I’d like to see Duke get bit more athleticism.

2. Roy Williams, North Carolina

What I like:
Over 600 total wins, 7 Final Fours, and 2 National Titles… Need I say more?

The next step:
Oh no it’s been 3 years since UNC has been to the Final Four! Like Duke UNC is an elite basketball school. If there is a next step, it would be for Williams to eventually catch Coach K in National Titles, and really fuel the fire of who’s had a better career. These are problems of Hall of Fame coaches.

3. Leonard Hamilton, Florida State

What I like:
It would have really been nice to see FSU make a deep tournament run this year, because Hamilton is one of the country’s most underrated coaches. He’s turned the Seminoles into the ACC’s third best program and won an ACC Title this year. He has had 4 straight NCAA tournament appearances and the Noles year in and year out play some of the best defense in the nation.

The next step:
Consistency… Florida State has proven they can play with the North Carolina’s and Duke’s. There’s still a tendency for FSU to play down to their competition. The Noles are a very good program to be an elite one they need a higher level of consistency.

4. Mark Gottfried, NC State

What I like:
What Mark Gottfried did in his first year at N.C. State was remarkable, 24 wins, a sweet 16 appearance, and one of the country’s best recruiting classes. Even while at Alabama Gottfried had 5 straight NCAA tournament teams. He twice got Murray State to the Big Dance.

The next step:
Gottfried had an outstanding first season at N.C. State now he just needs to keep the momentum up. The Wolfpack will likely enter next season as the pre-season No. 1 or No. 2 team in the ACC.

5. Jim Larranaga, Miami

What I like:
Laranagana has won everywhere he’s been. He made 5 NCAAs while at George Mason including the memorable 2006 Final Four team. I don’t care what Frank Haith did at Missouri, I thought Canes fundamentals were much better this season. A win over Florida State in the ACC tournament probably would have got Miami NCAAs.

The next step:
Time get Miami into the NCAAs.

6. Tony Bennett, Virginia

What I like:
Bennett’s rebuilding project at UVA culminated in the Cavaliers making the NCAAs this year and winning 22 games. You have to love the defense Virginia can play. At one point they held 12 straight opponents under 70 points.

The Next Step:
Judging by Virginia’s strong incoming class, Bennett knows exactly what the next step is. Get the overall talent level up in Charlottesville..

7. Brad Brownell, Clemson

What I like:
Now that Brownell has been at Clemson for 2 years, it’s clear the Tigers get better as the season continues. That’s the mark of a good coach.

The Next Step:
There’s no question the Tigers are well coached, but to remain competitive in a rapidly improving ACC, Brownell must elevate the talent at Clemson. Next season may be a bit of rebuilding one at Clemson with departure of seniors Tanner Smith and Andre Young, but the Tigers probably need to make the NCAA’s by 2014.

8. Mark Turgeon, Maryland

What I like:
Turgeon was a consistent winner at Texas A&M taking the Aggies to 4 straight NCAA tournaments and never winning less than 24 games. He’s a winner and he’ll get Maryland turned around.

The Next Step:
Get Terrell Stoglin to reach his potential. With the ability Stoglin has, he just needs play more under control. The Terps are good enough with a break or two to finish in the upper half of the ACC next season and possibly reach the NCAA bubble.

9. Seth Greenberg, Virginia Tech

What I like:
As long as Greenberg is at Virginia Tech, the Hokies will be decent. He teams always are known for tough hard nosed play. Before this season Virginia Tech went 5 straight seasons winning at least 19 games.

The Next Step:
I don’t think Greenberg is a bad coach. In fact there’s only 1 coach on this list I would put that label on. Greenberg has been at Virginia Tech 8 seasons with 1 only NCAA appearance. Fair or not next year is NCAAs or bust. He’s getting the reputation of being the Chan Gailey of ACC basketball, consistently competitive but unable to get you over the hump.

10. Steve Donahue, Boston College

What I like:
You don’t win 72 games your final 3 seasons at Cornell without knowing how to coach.

The Next Step:
Prove that BC’s 9 win 2011-2012 was an aberration. I know the Eagles were young, but that was a rough season in Boston. Donahue probably needs at least a 5-6 game improvement to show the BC fans the Eagles are moving in the right direction.

11. Brian Gregory, Georgia Tech

What I like:
Gregory came in right away at Georgia Tech and put together a top 20 class. He nabbed arguably the best player in the state of Georgia in Robert Carter. Despite the Jacket’s lack of talent the defensive effort was always there in a rough 2011-2012 season.

The Next Step:
After an 11 win season, Gregory just needs to make the Jackets competitive again. The recruiting class was a good start. If Gregory gets the Jackets to the NIT next year give him the ACC COY award.

12. Jeff Bzdelik, Wake Forest

What I like: * crickets *

The Next Step:
Honestly, I really don’t like anything about Bzdelik as a basketball coach. I didn’t like the hire. He didn’t win at Colorado and isn’t winning at Wake Forest. 5 ACC wins in 2 years isn’t going to cut it. It’s an absolute must that Bzdelik make some strides and at least get the Deacs to .500.

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