Who are the top 10 active coaches in CBB?

Submitted by Human Torpedo on April 26th, 2018 at 1:39 PM

I've personally noticed quite a bit of separation (be it Hall of Fame resume overall or just breaking through in a big way lately) between these 10 coaches and the rest of D-I virtually. The 10 coaches IMO that are head and shoulders above the pack are:

1. Coach K

2. Jay Wright

3. Roy Williams

4. Self

5. Izzo (still got the Hall of Fame results historically)

6. Calipari

7. Mark Few

8. Beilein

9. Tony Bennett

10. Sean Miller

Edit: Let me be clear, this isn't just for right now, but for a rating of each guy's whole career at his particular school



April 26th, 2018 at 2:26 PM ^

I love Beilein and there is definetely an argument for him over Izzo but people are really under selling Izzo's body of work.

In 22 years at MSU he has a national championship and 7 final fours and 2 additional elite eights. The only recruiting class that if you stayed all 4 years that wouldn't have reached a final four is 2010 and they made two sweet sixteens and an elite eight. Even in just the last 5 years, which is the timeframe you'd be using to argue Beilein is better (and I would agree he's been better over the last 5 years) they have 3 big ten championships, a final four and an elite eight. The last two years have been flops and Beilein has clearly outperformed over that range but that is a tiny timeframe to use to try to shit on Izzo as a not top coach. Combining history, who you would want coaching your team, and that recruiting does matter next year I'd go:

1) Jay Wright

2) Coach K

3) Calipari

4) Beilein

5) Roy Williams

6) Izzo

7) Gregg Marshall

8) Mark Few

9) Tony Bennet

10) Dana Altman


April 26th, 2018 at 3:15 PM ^

one regular season title and 2 conference tournament titles.  Still the main point of his argument is the recruits that stay 4 years go to the Final Four.  Fails to mention that not one player on next year's team will have played in a sweet 16 game, let alone a Final Four.


April 26th, 2018 at 3:15 PM ^

I hate the angry midget as much as the next guy, but his resumè speaks for itself. He hasn’t had the tourney success the past few years but he did win the conference this season and the conference tourney in 2016. It still is impressive that his squad has made the tourney 21 straight years. That’s something elite coaches like Calipari, Jay Wright and even Beilein can’t claim. Is he in the top half of my top 10 now? No, but he is still a pretty good coach.

Maison Bleue

April 26th, 2018 at 5:27 PM ^

I would actually prefer they just count the tournament win as a B1G championship like the rest of college basketball does. It's what earns you a spot in the tournament and with this many teams per conference, scheduling can be quite unbalanced (i.e. MSU 2017).  Although with 20 conference games now it should be a bit better.


April 26th, 2018 at 6:48 PM ^

Getting hot for 4 days doesn’t mean you deserve a championship. Winning the most conference games is and rightly should be the only B10 championship that counts. Winning the tournament is awesome and I have loved the last two years but in no way should 5 days of awesome play outweigh 4 months of games

Mr Miggle

April 26th, 2018 at 7:14 PM ^

consistency. We had 18 games and 11 teams when the tournament started. That was 8 opponents twice and 2 once. That's a good way to crown a champion, better than the tournament in my opinion. While not as good with expansion, you can still make the argument that 18 or 20 games is better than single elimination. The tournament can be unbalanced too.

Human Torpedo

April 26th, 2018 at 1:58 PM ^

Overall body of work AND power rankings. And let's not try and act like MSU was some bubble team this year. I definitely agree Izzo is overrated, but considering most power rankings in the past had him a lock in the top 3 (sometimes #1) I actually thought I was harsher than most sports news sites

Mr Miggle

April 26th, 2018 at 7:05 PM ^

and their current level. That doesn't make much sense to me. I wouldn't include Albert Pujols and Ichiro on a list of the best current players in baseball.

Instead, I'll split up my list with the five I would rank the highest right now, one up and comer who doesn't have the resume yet and four more for their overall career.

Jay Wright

John Beilein 

Tony Bennett

Mark Few

Bob Huggins (not that I'd want him coaching my team)

Dan D'Antoni (He missed his calling in the NBA.)


Roy Williams



I didn't leave off the cheaters altogether, but I didn't give credit for acquiring talent through questionable means.




A Lot of Milk

April 26th, 2018 at 1:54 PM ^

You seem like you wanted to make it clear that you were talking about the best coaches right now, not historically, but then you had coach K number one and Izzo five...

1. Wright

2. Roy Williams

3. Coach K

4. Beilein

5. Self

6. Calipari

7. Bennett

8. Few

9. Dana Altman

10. Gregg Marshall

Brian Griese

April 26th, 2018 at 1:50 PM ^

ahead of Calipari and Beilein is comical, honestly. I would like for you to find me any non-Sparty honk that would choose Izzo to coach their team as of today over those two.

yossarians tree

April 26th, 2018 at 1:52 PM ^

Beilein, Mark Few, and Jay Wright are the top three in no particular order, and for Michigan we have the exact right man.

Izzo was a shell of himself five years ago, and now he is completely off this list. He's done. The Dook dude is not far behind him. His players make him look like a better coach than he is.

Calipari I think is actually a pretty good coach for somehow stitching all those one-and-done AAU freaks into a semblance of a team most seasons.

L'Carpetron Do…

April 26th, 2018 at 2:27 PM ^

I hear ya. My metric for this is 1) what other coaches develop their players better than Beilein 2) what teams improve over the course of a season like Michigan does 3) what coaches out there could straight up out-coach Beilein in a game given three to five days  to prepare?  The answer to that is no one. Best pure coach in the game.  


April 26th, 2018 at 2:10 PM ^

He's good but not top 5. Recruiting is part of the job but you're right he has not much with very talented teams. I would say if there's elite, great, and good coaches he probably falls close to great because of the talent his brings in.


April 26th, 2018 at 2:47 PM ^

He's won 14 straight Big 12 titles (been at Kansas 15 years total). He's made 3 Final Fours, won a national title, 10 Elite Eights (8 at Kansas) and as a head coach hasn't missed the tournament in 20 years. 

Comparatively in the 15 years before him at KU, Williams had 4 Final Fours but no titles, 5 Elite Eights and 9 conference titles.

Yes he has a history of being upset in the tournament. But that's wildly overblown considering his teams are always high seeds so they're always at risk of being upset. In 15 years he has 8 Elite Eights so he doesn't struggle to advance on a regular basis. He only has the one title but winning the tournament has a major luck factor.

Self is one of the best coaches of our generation. To pretend like he's not even good is ridiculous.

Stringer Bell

April 26th, 2018 at 2:11 PM ^

I'd put Chris Mack up there over Sean Miller.  Also Izzo is not top 5.  You need to have some semblance of recent success to be considered top 5 (which guys like Coach K and Williams do).  No one cares that he won a title and went to 3 straight Final Fours 20 years ago.


April 26th, 2018 at 2:59 PM ^

Hard to argue with any of your lists. I think there are 5 or six that you cant list in any order because of their success past and present and I think there are newcomers to the scene that you can't rank above the body of work of someone like Izzo or Few. but here goes.

1. Coach K

2. John Calipari

3. Bill Self

4. Jay Wright

5. Roy Williams

6. Jim Boeheim

7. Tom Izzo

8. Mark Few

9. John Beilein

10. Bobby Huggins/Greg Marshall

Hon Mention: Smart, Mack, A. Johnson, Alford, Hurley, E. Cooley, Bennett, Painter . . .


April 26th, 2018 at 3:01 PM ^

1) Top 10 active coaches in terms of their career accomplishments to-date (these are in alphabetical order, I'm not ranking them):

Beilein, Bill Self, Boeheim, Calipari, Coach K, Huggins, Izzo, Jay Wright, Larranaga, Roy Williams.

2) Top 10 active coaches in who I would want RIGHT NOW (again alphabetical order):

Beilein, Bill Self, Calipari, Coach K, Gregg Marshall, Izzo, Jay Wright, Mark Few, Roy Williams, Shaka Smart.

Folk in bold are on both lists.