July 19th, 2013 at 12:22 AM ^

Here are the 10 best coaches right now entering 2013-14. This isn't a career award but the coaches that are at the top of their games today when it comes to recruiting, developing that talent and taking their programs to the pinnacle of their sport.

Its basically ranking how they did last season. The 8 ahead of him either won championships and/or at least finished above .500.


July 19th, 2013 at 12:40 AM ^

Berenson falls down this list because his 2012-13 campaign ranked among his worst at Michigan, with the Wolverines going 18-19-3 and failing to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1990. But there's no way he's not one of the top 10 coaches at Michigan, and if not for his peers achieving at incredibly high standards this past year, he'd be much higher.

It's not a lifetime ranking


July 19th, 2013 at 12:07 AM ^

What's up with putting Red at #9? Under Red, we made the NCAA tournament 22 straight years which included 11 frozen fours and 2 national titles. Even if you say right now, great coaches still have off years. Michigan still almost made the NCAA tournament despite themselves last year and this year should be another tournament year no problem (KNOCK ON WOOD)

I think it's fairly easy to argue that he's somewhere between #1 and #3. Given the plinko nature of the tournament, making the frozen four in HALF of your tries is damn impressive. I don't think one off year changes that

Ty Butterfield

July 19th, 2013 at 12:13 AM ^

Hard to argue with what the other coaches on the list have done this past season. Men's gymnastics and men's swimming and diving both won national titles. Men's basketball was the national runner up and the women's softball team made the College World Series. It shows how strong the athletic department is. Say what you want about Dave Brandon but he seems committed to making all sports strong not just the revenue sports. I think the football team is still digging out of a hole as far as depth and it is going to take time. If the football team goes 8-4 again this year you could see some people start to get impatient.


July 19th, 2013 at 12:32 AM ^

Apparently people can't read. Spath says in the intro, "this isn't a career award but the coaches that are at the top of their game today when it comes to recruiting, developing that talent and taking their programs to the pinnacle of their sport."

So yeah, Red's off year hurt him, as well as the uncertainty about next year.

I mean come on people, Beileinn is great, but would anybody put him as a better UM-coach than Hutchins or Red?

Bando Calrissian

July 19th, 2013 at 12:36 AM ^

I'll say it: I don't really have a problem with this list. 

For all of you whining about Red, there are more seasons than not where you could honestly say his teams have dramatically underachieved with the most talent of any team on campus. Unfocused, scattered, even downright lazy efforts for large stretches of seasons, total brainfarts in the tournament, big chemistry and leadership problems on and off the ice... Don't get me wrong, I love Red, but he gets a pass from the fanbase far too often, IMO. 

And, really, it's not like the 8 people above him on that list are slouches.


July 19th, 2013 at 8:53 AM ^

There have been more seasons than not that the team has underachieved? We've been to the Frozen Four in about half the seasons we've played since 1990 - which, considering the almost crapshoot that single elimination hockey is, I'd say it's pretty impressive. Jerry York seems to be the only guy to have figured out that puzzle recently.  We've also had at least one of the conference regular season or tournament title in 15 of those seasons. If you would qualify it as underachieved in since 2005, I'd agree - we've had 3 first round tourney exits since then, plus the complete miss this year. 


July 19th, 2013 at 2:40 PM ^

You would think, but in the last 5 NCAA tournaments, the better seed is winning at only a 55% clip throughout the tournament at 39-32 (4 games featured teams with the same seed). I don't think that excuses losing to a team supposedly worse than you but I think it does show that it happens to everybody. Even Jerry York throws up some duds. They've won 3 of the last 5 NCAA titles, but the two years they didn't win they lost in the first round and missed the tourney altogether in the other. 

Single elimination tournaments are awesome for fans, but they're not exactly a great way to determine the best team. They make the results much more random. Was Michigan the second best basketball team this past season? I would argue no as the season as a whole determines that IMO. And hockey has way more variables than basketball so it makes the results much more inconsistent. 


July 19th, 2013 at 1:07 AM ^

Institutionally, making the WCWS as Michigan is almost definitely harder than making the championship game in MBB. I'm sure people think I'm biased for saying that, and they're probably right, but that 1/3 of the equation is Hutch > Beilein, for sure (IMO). Recruiting is more or less the same way, at least Beilein has a powerhouse conference to sell to recruits (granted, M's prestige in the real world is an asset that Hutch can utilize more than Beilein). Development, I'm not sure because neither has brought in a slouch class in a while; probably edge to Beilein for scouting, but no idea about development.


July 21st, 2013 at 3:17 AM ^

let's compare to the Final Four. 20 Big Ten teams have made it since 1982 (NCAA first year of womens championships). 13 non-Michigan teams that played their season in the Big Ten Conference have been in the WCWS since 1982. With Michigan it's 23, with three titles to one in favor of MBB.

I love Beilein; I think he's everything that's right about Michigan combined with little that's wrong, but he has an easier job (and has accomplished less so far) than Carol Hutchins and that's pretty much beyond debate, including my statement that the championship game was easier to reach in MBB than the WCWS was in softball for a team from Ann Arbor, Michigan.

For you personally I'd add that Hutch has accomplished more than Red, if that makes you take any statements here with more weight. In all reality, both are in the top few percentiles in their professions all time. Hoke and Beilein can get there, but they're not that caliber yet.


July 22nd, 2013 at 3:03 PM ^

Originally you said the championship game. And that extra win against usually elite competition is tough. Your Final Four numbers go down if you're talking one more game. And again, you were comparing which was harder to win it all in....just making the WCWS as one of the 8.  The rest of the Big Ten being weak doesn't mean anything, because it means they'll probably have enough wins to make the Tournament. Last season they had to win 3 games to get there, instead of 5 to get to the championship game. (With no way to save yourself from one bad outting like you can in a loss in softball).

The rest really doesn't have a lot to do with the original point. Is it harder to win the whole thing in softball than basketball? Probably, yes, and definitely for Michigan (as the lone eastern power vs. a basketball team that has the tools to be near elite). And has Hutch done more than Beilein (especially if you don't go by their stupid "what have you done for me lately" view)?  Sure.  I'm pretty sure Hutch probably ranks as the most accomplished coach at Michigan.  Yes, even over Red (who may have won it all more but has a school that should be a power, and a much easier Tournament than the other sports). 

But is it harder to just MAKE the WCWS than it is to get the Championship game of the basketball tournament? I don't think so.


July 22nd, 2013 at 6:45 PM ^

Well that's what I meant by saying I'd compromise; I'll admit I overreached in general, and think the Final Four is probably the better comparison. However, I still think there are bonus points to be had for needing a team headlined by players from California, Georgia, California, and a rare find out of the west side of Michigan compared to a team headlined by guys out of Ohio, Indiana, Florida and Indiana which is what I mean by this particular year.

Overall, like I was trying to say above, I love Beilein and think he's perfect for what Michigan needs. The whole premise isn't great in the first place since everything is so drastically different across sports that it necessitates bad comparisons, like the MBB tournament and the WCWS.

Wolverine Devotee

July 19th, 2013 at 1:09 AM ^

Hutch and Red over Beilein.

They've been doing it for a long time here and both have won national titles. I'm confident they'll both have facilities named after them here when they retire.


July 19th, 2013 at 1:11 AM ^

This list is clownshoes. The two best coaches representing UofM on year in/year out base are Red & Hutch. These programs are powerhouses who've earned that moniker under these coaching staffs. Hockey may have had a down year but lets not forget we were OT away from another Nat'l Championship just two years ago!

rob f

July 19th, 2013 at 1:40 AM ^

I wouldn't at all be surprised to see Women's basketball coach Kim Barnes-Arico and baseball coach Erik Bakich on the top ten list in the very near future.


July 19th, 2013 at 8:10 AM ^

It appears he has the team heading back in the right direction and the article mentions that he could be atop the list in a couple of years but as of now he still hasn't won a Big Ten championship so he hasn't really earned a top spot yet.

Red is Blue

July 19th, 2013 at 10:27 AM ^

Hearsay evidence and obviously from awhile ago, but reportedly Bo  once saw Hutch, pointed at her and said something like "There is the best coach at Michigan."