Another list of the top 10 active college basketball coaches has been compiled, this one by Josh Herwit, a basketball analyst and editor at Fox Sports.

What’s different are the qualifications the analyst would use in hiring a new coach, namely an individual who would be required “to build a clean and disciplined program from scratch, one that has the capability of competing for national championships.”

Interesting criteria, the clean and disciplined part. Here are his choices:

  1. Tom Izzo, Michigan State
  2. Rick Pitino, Louisville
  3. Mike Krzyzewski, Duke
  4. Roy Williams, North Carollina
  5. Jay Wright, Villanova
  6. Bo Ryan, Wisconsin
  7. Jamie Dixon, Pittsburgh
  8. Ben Howland, UCLA
  9. Sean Miller, Arizona
  10. Tony Bennett, Virginia

Honorable Mention: John Beinlein, Michigan

Says this about Pitino:

“One of the most animated and candid coaches around, Pitino has been a bona fide winner going back to his early days at Providence, where he took the Friars to a Final Four in less than two years of service. Since then, the 56-year-old New Yorker has accumulated over 500 victories, including one in the 1996 national championship game with Kentucky, and after a brief stint in the NBA, he’s turned Louisville back into a national power whether it’s been in Conference USA or the Big East.”

Not making the top 10 were such noteables as Jim Boeheim, Syracuse; Bill Self, Kansas; Jim Calhoun, UConn; and Billy Donovan, Florida.

Anyone else missing? Consider the criteria.

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By Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

25 thoughts on “Clean, Disciplined Top 10 Coaches”
  1. Calipari has taken this state by storm. The expectations are high. With such an avid fan base as that which exists in Lexington…any and every loss will be discussed, dissected, and decried as nothing short a national disaster. And, if they lose to a VMI or Gardner-Webb qualtiy team, I fully expect that the Kentucky State senate will call an emergency meeting.

    Lock your doors, Lexingtonians. John Wall is coming to town.

  2. Hey, I like Pitino, he is a great coach, but if the list is on cleanliness then shouldn’t that have been taken into account?

  3. Funny thing is Pitino had all those Recruiting violations before he made it to UK? So now all of a sudden you have issues with it? Amazing, since P has been at UofL they have run a clean program, and not one player has been arrested while on the team. Not one player has slapped a fan, and not one player has beat up his girlfriend. Your new coach, or holyman is the guy with that on his record, and recently I might add. When was Rick’s last infraction? Just can’t wait until it all blows up in your face. Just can’t wait.

    BTW, this is a card fan blog, you are defenitely going to hear Cardinal bias, go to the Cats websites to hear lies and illusions. Your coach recruits questionable kids, thats a fact, there is no twisting that.

  4. “cardfan4life, The tattoos, headbands, one and dones, those are a fact now for your institution. I love it.”

    I glad you love this, and I hope you all will learn to love the butt kicking once a year.

    It is really easy, Cal has zero violations and Pitino 8.

    That is why this list is a joke

  5. OK, so lets say Cal had been implicated at Umass, that still puts him 7 behind Pitino in the violations category.

  6. Just because Cal hasn’t been caught cheating doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened. And Cal recruits kids who get into trouble, thats just a fact. Camby was a cheat, Cal should have watched him closely, Cal let the one kid back on the team after beating the carp out of his girlfriend, and then there is a current Memphis player who was caught on tape slapping / hitting a UAB fan. That is not a clean coach. I find it hilarious that one of the biggest UK insults towards UofL has always been the ville is filled with thugs. That ends now, and it will only get worse. The tattoos, headbands, one and dones, those are a fact now for your institution. I love it.

  7. yeah and i seem to recall coach cal being cleared of any wrongdoing at umass

  8. Calipari has ZERO Violations on his record. The great Pitino has 8 recruiting violations on his record. So I am not sure how he fits the clean category.

    1. Sorry for assuming that you meant the bottom list of names were “close” to making the list… what does that bottom list represent then if not “almost in”

      Not close ??

      Please tell me..

  9. funny how lists that dont mean anything get made..

    put your job and childrens future on the line and make that list…

    blow up the bias and maybe 5 of those coaches stick.. and Calhoun clean ?? really ?? really? uconn is about to take a foot in the azz… you can steal laptops up there and its ok.. you put two coaches in the top 5 that have been penalized by the NCAA for infractions.. how do you define clean ?? the ncaa says Cal is cleaner than two of your 10…

  10. Don’t give him facts, Bradley. It will not do you any good. This guy has his head shoved up Rick’s butt. But, you know what? It’s coming. That roaring sound you hear is that Big Blue Locomotive. This season coming up will be the year of the sweep in football and basketball.

    1. We report, you decide. The writer was just passing along the opinion of a Fox basketball analyst. UK was not mentioned in the article but apparently it hit a sensitive nerve with the school’s fans. It would be nice for them if they didn’t actually have to play the games.

  11. I think a guy with zero NCAA violations(Calipari) would fit this guys criteria more than a coach with 8 NCAA violations like Pitino would. In fact, the funny thing is, Pitino and Roy Williams have more violations than the rest of the list combined, and that’s actually a fact.

  12. Yeah, but what Calipari did for Memphis and even U Mass, is pretty impressive, if you have to throw out what he has done for UK so far.

    I don’t recall Memphis being in trouble for anything and I believe they got to be ranked in the top 5, maybe real close to #1 for wins and NCAA tournament success in the last 4 years. IMO, he built them up from scratch.

    Calipari not even being on the list and him not being caught breaking any rules at Memphis, definitely shows some hatred or bias.

  13. Wow. Sure isn’t a biased card fan making this list, i mean Calipari definatly can’t turn a program around like Tony Bennett or Bo Ryan! They get #1 recruting classes within 2 months all the time.

    1. I think he using a specific criteria to pick these coaches, like using “clean and disciplined approach” to recruit top talent. What’s happening in Lexington is not normal and does raise a few concerns, even among unbiased observers.

  14. I think we all know who would be at the top of a list on how to build a program in all the wrong ways.

  15. Pretty comprehensive list of the clean coaches. There aren’t that many, certainly not in our region.

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