When you think of legendary college basketball coaches like John Wooden and Pat Summitt, who else comes to mind? Bobby Knight? Maybe Dean Smith? These are all extraordinary basketball minds, but here’s my question for you: who’s the next Pat Summitt? Who is the next legendary basketball coach?Of course, there are people like Coach K and Geno, who are already legends based off of their championships alone. Coach K has five and Geno has a mind blowing 11.
But who else? Has Coach Cal earned it yet?
He’s had an outstanding 24 players picked in the lottery of the NBA Draft, but only has one national championship ring on his finger. Some would argue that he hasn’t won enough championships to be in that conversation, while others would argue that putting players in the league is just as great as winning. Which side of the debate are you on?
How about Dawn Staley? Is she worthy of legendary status? Like Calipari, she only has one national championship win under her belt, but on the other hand, she has an impressive track record as both a coach and player.
I’m eager to start this conversation for several reasons.
First, because when you google “legendary college basketball coaches”, there is only one person on that list that coached women’s basketball.
And although her name holds tremendous weight in the basketball world, she is only #12 on the list. If you’re unsure of who I’m referring to, it rhymes with Bat Plummet. With that being said, I refuse to believe that the Pat Summitt is only the 12th greatest college basketball coach ever.
In fact, if you ask me, she’s top 2. And I’m not talking about #2.
Secondly, I’m curious to the see how much the scandals some of these coaches have faced will play a part in their legendary status. Sure, Bobby Knight knew his way around a basketball court, but considering the alleged abuse inflicted upon his players, is he still a legend?
I’m not sure which side my opinion falls on. On one hand, there is no taking away all of the hard fought championships that he coached during his time at Indiana University. But, on the other hand, if some of your players are scarred for life just based on the things you said to them while coaching them, would legendary really be the first adjective that comes to mind when thinking of Bobby Knight?
Lastly, my eagerness revolves around the idea that hanging banners is the only thing that makes you a legendary coach. In my opinion, a coach who has a lottery player picked every year for 10 years straight is just as notable as a coach with 10 Elite Eight appearances. However, my opinion is only half of the conversation. Let’s get it started. Who is the next legendary college basketball coach?
Former Women’s Basketball Player for The Indiana University Hoosiers. Striving to be the next Doris Burke. Brace yourself for overly opinionated posts coming from me.