When Should Coach Retire? Weep On It/Think On It/Sleep On It/Drink On It

When is the proper time to leave via retirement for a legend such as Connecticut's Jim Calhoun? There are no hard-and-fast rules and discerning the right sequence to step aside is more elusive than one might think.

But what's patently clear is not every coach can depart like luminaries John Wooden, Al McGuire, Ray Meyer and Dean Smith when they bowed out in style. From 1964 to 1975 with Wooden at the helm, UCLA won an NCAA-record 10 national titles, including seven straight from 1967 through 1973. McGuire's goodbye in 1977 with an NCAA title marked Marquette's eighth straight season finishing among the Top 10 in a final wire-service poll. Meyer directed DePaul to a Top 6 finish in a final wire-service poll six times in his final seven seasons from 1978 through 1984. Smith won at least 28 games with North Carolina in four of his final five seasons from 1992-93 through 1996-97.

But those fond farewells are the exception, not the rule, in trying to cope with Father Time. How many school all-time winningest mentors such as Charlie Coles with Miami (OH) this past year rode off into the sunset donning at least a partial black rather than white hat? How much they may have tarnished their legacy is debatable but hanging around too long probably caused a few of the following celebrated coaches to lose some of their luster:

Big Shoes to Fill: Pitino Among 11 Legend Successors to Reach Final Four

Much is made of the struggles for an individual when he succeeds a coaching legend such as active mentors Temple's Fran Dunphy (followed John Chaney), Louisville's Rick Pitino (Denny Crum), Purdue's Matt Painter (Gene Keady) and Maryland's Mark Turgeon (Gary Williams). But only eight of the successors on the following list posted losing marks during their tenures compared to twice as many of the predecessors.

Many times the celebrated coaches lay a solid foundation that can't possibly be messed up. Pitino joined Gene Bartow, John Brady, Mike Davis, Bill Guthridge, Joe B. Hall, Dick Harp, Jack Kraft, Pete Newell, John Oldham and Lou Rossini as coaches who took teams from the same institution to the Final Four after replacing an icon.

Naturally, it's not all peaches and cream inheriting a stable program. Before guiding South Florida to the NCAA playoffs this year, Stan Heath compiled a modest 82-71 record with Arkansas in five seasons from 2002-03 through 2006-07 after succeeding Nolan Richardson. Heath and Richardson (389-169 mark with the Hogs from 1986-2002) didn't quite make the following list regarding the level of success for successors of legends who won more than 400 games for a single school:

Coaching Legend School Record Tenure Successor Record Tenure
Phog Allen Kansas 588-218 1908, 09 & 20-56 Dick Harp 121-82 1957-64
Dale Brown Louisiana State 448-301 1973-97 John Brady 192-139 1998-2008
Howard Cann NYU 409-232 1924-58 Lou Rossini 185-137 1959-71
Lou Carnesecca St. John's 526-200 1966-70 & 74-92 Brian Mahoney 56-58 1993-96
Pete Carril Princeton 514-261 1968-96 Bill Carmody 92-25 1997-2000
Gale Catlett West Virginia 439-276 1979-2002 John Beilein 104-60 2003-07
John Chaney Temple 516-253 1983-2006 Fran Dunphy 134-65 2007-12
Denny Crum Louisville 675-295 1972-2001 Rick Pitino 273-105 2002-12
Ed Diddle Western Kentucky 759-302 1923-64 John Oldham 146-41 1965-71
Don Donoher Dayton 437-275 1964-89 Jim O'Brien 61-87 1990-94
Hec Edmundson Washington 488-195 1921-47 Art McLarney 53-36 1948-50
Fred Enke Arizona 511-318 1926-61 Bruce Larson 137-148 1962-72
Jack Friel Washington State 495-377 1929-58 Marv Harshman 155-181 1959-71
Taps Gallagher Niagara 465-261 1932-43 & 47-65 Jim Maloney 35-38 1966-68
Slats Gill Oregon State 599-392 1929-64 Paul Valenti 91-82 1960 & 65-70
Don Haskins Texas-El Paso 719-353 1962-99 Jason Rabedeaux 46-46 2000-02
Lou Henson Illinois 421-226 1976-96 Lon Kruger 81-48 1997-2000
Tony Hinkle Butler 549-384 1927-70 George Theofanis 79-105 1971-77
Nat Holman CCNY 423-190 1920-60 Dave Polansky* N/A N/A
Hank Iba Oklahoma State 655-316 1935-70 Sam Aubrey 18-60 1971-73
Gene Keady Purdue 512-270 1981-2005 Matt Painter 160-77 2006-12
Frank Keaney Rhode Island 403-124 1922-48 Robert "Red" Haire 57-42 1949-52
Bob Knight Indiana 659-242 1972-2000 Mike Davis 115-79 2001-06
Guy Lewis Houston 592-279 1957-86 Pat Foster 142-73 1987-93
Shelby Metcalf Texas A&M 438-306 1964-90 Kermit Davis Jr. 8-21 1991
Ray Meyer DePaul 724-354 1943-84 Joey Meyer 231-158 1985-97
Lute Olson Arizona 590-192 1984-2007 Kevin O'Neill 19-15 2008
Clarence "Nibs" Price California 449-294 1925-54 Pete Newell 119-44 1955-60
Adolph Rupp Kentucky 875-190 1931-72 Joe B. Hall 297-100 1973-85
Alex Severance Villanova 413-201 1937-61 Jack Kraft 238-95 1962-73
Dean Smith North Carolina 879-254 1962-97 Bill Guthridge 80-28 1998-2000
Norm Stewart Missouri 634-333 1968-99 Quin Snyder 126-91 2000-06
Jerry Tarkanian UNLV 509-105 1974-92 Rollie Massimino 36-21 1993 & '94
John Thompson Jr. Georgetown 596-239 1973-99 Craig Esherick 103-74 1999-2004
Gary Williams Maryland 461-252 1990-2011 Mark Turgeon 17-14 2012
John Wooden UCLA 620-147 1949-75 Gene Bartow 51-10 1976 & '77
Ned Wulk Arizona State 405-273 1958-82 Bob Weinhauer 44-45 1983-85

*CCNY de-emphasized its program after the 1952-53 season.

NOTE: Olson formally announced his retirement less than a month before the 2008-09 season when the Wildcats compiled a 21-14 record under Russ Pennell.

Groundbreaker: Blueblood Davis Becomes First Big Blue National Player of Year

Duke has had eight different national player of the year winners, including seven of them in a 21-year span from 1986 through 2006. UCLA is runner-up with six individuals earning national POY acclaim. Incredibly, perennial power Kentucky never had a representative win one of the six principal national player of the year awards until freshman Anthony Davis achieved the feat this season.

Excluding specialty publications, there are five nationally-recognized Player of the Year awards. However, none of them comes anywhere close to being the equivalent to college football's undisputed most prestigious honor, the Heisman Trophy. The basketball stalemate stems from essentially the same people voting on the major awards (writers or coaches or a combination) and the announcements coming one after another right around the Final Four when the playoff games dominate the sports page.

United Press International, which was a sixth venue for major awards through 1996, got all of this back slapping started in 1955. Four years later, the United States Basketball Writers Association, having chosen All-American teams in each of the two previous seasons, added a Player of the Year award to its postseason honors. In recent years, the USBWA award was sponsored by Mercedes and then RCA.

The third oldest of the awards comes from the most dominant wire service, the Associated Press. Perhaps because of its vast network of media outlets, the AP award gets more print and broadcast attention than the other honors. The AP award started in 1961 before affiliating in 1972 with the Commonwealth Athletic Club of Lexington, Kentucky, which was looking for a way to honor Hall of Fame coach Adolph Rupp. The result of their merger is the Rupp Trophy.

The Atlanta Tipoff Club initially was associated with UPI before starting its own Naismith Award in 1969. Six years later, the National Association of Basketball Coaches initiated its award, which was sponsored from the outset by the Eastman Kodak Company. In 1977, the Los Angeles Athletic Club began honoring Hall of Fame UCLA coach John Wooden with the Wooden Award.

Davis enabled Kentucky to become the only SEC school other than Louisiana State to supply a national POY. Following is a look at the seven conferences with at least two different individuals capturing one of the six principal national player of the year awards since UPI's initial winner in 1955:

ACC (16) - Shane Battier (Duke), Elton Brand (Duke), Johnny Dawkins (Duke), Tim Duncan (Wake Forest), Danny Ferry (Duke), Phil Ford (North Carolina), Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina), Art Heyman (Duke), Antawn Jamison (North Carolina), Michael Jordan (North Carolina), Christian Laettner (Duke), J.J. Redick (Duke), Ralph Sampson (Virginia), Joe Smith (Maryland), David Thompson (North Carolina State), Jason Williams (Duke)

Big Ten (11) - Gary Bradds (Ohio State), Dee Brown (Illinois), Calbert Cheaney (Indiana), Draymond Green (Michigan State), Jim Jackson (Ohio State), Jerry Lucas (Ohio State), Scott May (Indiana), Shawn Respert (Michigan State), Glenn Robinson Jr. (Purdue), Cazzie Russell (Michigan), Evan Turner (Ohio State)

Pac-12 (7) - Lew Alcindor (UCLA), Sean Elliott (Arizona), Walt Hazzard (UCLA), Marques Johnson (UCLA), Ed O'Bannon (UCLA), Bill Walton (UCLA), Sidney Wicks (UCLA)

Big East (4) - Ray Allen (Connecticut), Walter Berry (St. John's), Patrick Ewing (Georgetown), Chris Mullin (St. John's)

Big 12 (4) - Nick Collison (Kansas), Kevin Durant (Texas), T.J. Ford (Texas), Blake Griffin (Oklahoma)

Missouri Valley (3) - Larry Bird (Indiana State), Hersey Hawkins (Bradley), Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati)

SEC (3) - Anthony Davis (Kentucky), Pete Maravich (Louisiana State), Shaquille O'Neal (Louisiana State)

NOTE: Cincinnati joined the Big East in 2005-06.

Change of Scenery: From King of Hill to Looking Uphill at Small-School Level

Butler's bench boss before Brad Stevens guided the mid-major Bulldogs to back-to-back NCAA Tournament championship games was Todd Lickliter, who earned national coach of the year acclaim in 2007 with his third season of more than 25 victories in his first six campaigns. After a shaky three-season stint with Iowa, Lickliter has resurfaced at the small-college level by becoming the new coach for Marian (IN).

Lickliter is one of only a handful of individuals named national coach of the year at the highest level before subsequently coaching a small school. Coincidentally, Marian is the alma mater of Bill Hodges, who directed Larry Bird-led Indiana State to the 1979 NCAA title contest.

Many observers might think Rollie Massimino, the coach at Northwood (FL) the previous six seasons after directing Villanova to the 1985 NCAA crown, is in this rare category. But Massimino is among high-profile mentors such as Denny Crum, Billy Donovan, Bo Ryan and Gary Williams never to receive one of the major national coach of the year awards (AP, NABC, Naismith, UPI, USBWA).

Lickliter and Hodges are among the following seven major-college national coaches of the year - two of them from San Francisco - who subsequently coached a small school:

National Coach of Year School (Award Season) Subsequent Small College Tenure
Bob Gaillard San Francisco (1976-77) Lewis & Clark (OR) 1989-90 through 2010-11
Bill Hodges Indiana State (1978-79) Georgia College 1986-87 through 1990-91
Ed Jucker Cincinnati (1962-63) Rollins (FL) 1972-73 through 1976-77
Abe Lemons Texas (1977-78) Oklahoma City* 1985-86 through 1989-90
Todd Lickliter Butler (2006-07) Marian (IN) since 2012-13
Jim O'Brien Ohio State (1998-99) Emerson (MA) 2011-12 and 2012-13
Phil Woolpert San Francisco (1954-55 and 1955-56) San Diego 1962-63 through 1968-69

*OCU was still a DI school in 1983-84 and 1984-85 during Lemons' second stint as coach.
NOTE: San Diego moved up to the NCAA DI level in 1979-80.

Family Feud: Zeigler or Reed Could Be Top Transfer After Dad's Dismissal

If Trey Zeigler helps propel Pittsburgh back to the NCAA playoffs, the swingman might have the most impact of any player ever to transfer to another school after playing for his father before he was fired as coach. For some inexplicable reason, the NCAA granted a waiver allowing Trey to be immediately eligible with the Panthers in the aftermath of dad Ernie Zeigler's dismissal at Central Michigan.

Somewhat overlooked in this category because he sat out last season is Georgia Southern's Cliff Reed, who was the MEAC's Player of the Year in 2010-11 before his dad was axed by Bethune-Cookman. Reed was a redshirt at UCF before rejoining his father at GSU when he was hired as an assistant coach. The best player to date in this rare category probably is Joedy Gardner, who twice led Long Beach State in scoring in the mid-1980s after departing Northern Arizona.

Prominent playmaker sons of Sonny Allen (Southern Methodist to Nevada-Reno), Tubby Smith (Georgia to Kentucky), Gene Smithson (Illinois State to Wichita State), Eddie Sutton (Kentucky to Oklahoma State) and Ralph Willard (Western Kentucky to Pittsburgh) were transfers who sat out a redshirt season after their father voluntarily switched schools. A rare player who chose to stay put after his father was issued a pink slip was Canisius' Nick Macarchuk III in the late 1980s.

Billy Baron, who previously transferred from Virginia, was expected to be like Macarchuk at Rhode Island tagged along with his father after he was fired and wound up at Canisius. More than 100 NCAA Division I schools have had a father-son, coach-player combination. Following is a look at a handful of players who transferred to another DI school after his father was axed as coach:

Transfer Son Father/Coach Original College (Statistics) Transfer School (Statistics)
Brian Barone Tony Barone Sr. Texas A&M 97-98 (2.7 ppg, 4 apg) Marquette 00-01 (2.6 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 1.9 apg)
Joedy Gardner Jr. Joedy Gardner Sr. Northern Arizona 80-81 (9.3 ppg, 4.5 apg) Long Beach State 83-84 (15.7 ppg, 3.2 rpg)
Kevin Grawer Rich Grawer Saint Louis 92 (3 ppg) Tulsa 94-95 (1.4 ppg, 0.8 apg)
Joey Miller Mike Miller Eastern Illinois 12 (10.4 ppg, 2.9 apg) Illinois-Chicago 13 (TBD)
Logan Nutt Dickey Nutt Arkansas State 08 (1.6 ppg, 1.1 apg) SE Missouri State 12 (1 ppg, 1.4 apg)
Cliff Reed Clifford Reed Jr. Bethune-Cookman 09-11 (16.5 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 4.8 apg) UCF 13 (TBD)
Marcus Watkins Melvin Watkins Texas A&M 03-04 (2.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg) Missouri 06-07 (2.3 ppg, 1.2 rpg)
Trey Zeigler Ernie Zeigler Central Michigan 11-12 (16 ppg, 6.1 rpg) Pittsburgh 13 (TBD)

Card Game: Louisville Likely #1 Preseason Pick Because of High School Reunion

Louisville, supplementing its already overstocked roster, likely assured itself a consensus preseason No. 1 national ranking after forward Montrezl Harrell hooked up with the Cardinals after de-committing from Virginia Tech following coach Seth Greenberg's dismissal by the Hokies. Harrell had played at Hargrave Military Academy (VA) under Kevin Keatts, who joined coach Rick Pitino's staff last year. Another Hargrave product at The Ville is guard Luke Hancock, who will be eligible the coming campaign after transferring from George Mason.

Oddly, new Virginia Tech coach James Johnson is one of six active Division I mentors who got their start in college coaching tagging along with a prep phenom. Keatts could become the next head coach in this category; especially since Pitino already has eight former assistants currently serving as a DI bench boss.

Will Harrell become another Louisville All-American after being part of a high school reunion? The school's top two career scorers - Darrell Griffith (Wade Houston) and DeJuan Wheat (Scott Davenport) - rejoined their high school coaches who became assistants under Denny Crum.

Pitino is well acquainted with this tried-and-true recruiting technique. Simeon Mars joined Pitino's Kentucky staff in 1996 directly with Jamaal Magloire, who went on to become the Wildcats' all-time leader in blocked shots. Pitino's initial exposure to the ploy probably was at his alma mater where all-time great Julius "Dr. J" Erving joined his high school coach with the Minutemen in the early 1970s just before Pitino arrived on Massachusetts' campus.

Ethical questions are always raised anytime the coach of a prize prospect is hired. But package deals are a longstanding practice. In 1989, Michigan was the 10th different school in a 20-year span to reach the Final Four with the help of a "coattail" franchise (assistant coach Perry Watson/starting guard Jalen Rose). There also were a total of 10 first- and second-team consensus All-Americans in that stretch stemming from such quid pro quo activity.

No Playing Pedigree: Some Coaches Didn't Don Jerseys Before Sideline Suits

You don't need to be a great player to be a great coach. In fact, you don't need to play at all. More than 10 percent of the active NCAA Division I coaches graduated from major universities where they didn't compete for the institution in basketball. A dozen of them in this category coached in the 2012 NCAA Tournament.

There is no textbook career path to becoming a coach. Just ask former All-American guards Mark Macon (Temple) and Isiah Thomas (Indiana) after they combined to win barely over one-fourth of their games the previous three seasons before being axed by Binghamton and Florida International, respectively.

Indiana's Branch McCracken is the only one of 46 All-Americans who became major-college mentors to compile a higher winning percentage as a coach than as a player (.588 as IU player from 1927-28 through 1929-30; .677 as Hoosiers coach in 24 seasons from 1938-39 to 1964-65). Proving you don't have to play to be successful as a bench boss, the following alphabetical list of active DI coaches -- including 11 of them with multiple schools - have guided teams to the NCAA playoffs despite not playing major-college basketball:

Active Coach Current School Alma Mater
Ben Braun Rice Wisconsin '75
Rick Byrd Belmont Tennessee '76
Tim Carter South Carolina State Kansas '79
Tom Crean Indiana Central Michigan '89
Mick Cronin Cincinnati Cincinnati '96
Keith Dambrot Akron Akron '82
Keno Davis Central Michigan Iowa '95
Ed DeChellis Navy Penn State '82
Scott Drew Baylor Butler '93
Cliff Ellis Coastal Carolina Florida State '68
Larry Eustachy Colorado State Long Beach State '79
Mark Few Gonzaga Oregon '87
Bill Grier San Diego Oregon '90
Steve Hawkins Western Michigan South Alabama '87
Larry Hunter Western Carolina Ohio University '71
Billy Kennedy Texas A&M Southeastern Louisiana '86
Rick Majerus Saint Louis Marquette '70
Bob Marlin Louisiana-Lafayette Mississippi State '81
Frank Martin South Carolina Florida International '93
Marvin Menzies New Mexico State UCLA '87
Dan Monson Long Beach State Idaho '85
Steve Prohm Murray State Alabama '97
Steve Shields UALR Baylor '88
John Shulman Chattanooga East Tennessee State '89
Bruce Weber Kansas State Wisconsin-Milwaukee '78
Bob Williams UC Santa Barbara San Jose State '76
Roy Williams North Carolina North Carolina '72

NOTE: Braun (Eastern Michigan and California), Carter (Texas-San Antonio), Crean (Marquette), Cronin (Murray State), Davis (Drake), DeChellis (East Tennessee State and Penn State), Ellis (South Alabama, Clemson and Auburn), Eustachy (Utah State, Iowa State and Southern Mississippi), Hunter (Ohio University), Kennedy (Southeastern Louisiana and Murray State), Majerus (Ball State and Utah), Marlin (Sam Houston State), Martin (Kansas State), Monson (Gonzaga and Minnesota), Weber (Southern Illinois and Illinois) and R. Williams (Kansas) coached other schools in the NCAA Tournament.

Dead Teams Walking: Brown, Colgate and UNH Never Have Won 20 Games

The latest individual to be named coach of his alma mater is Mike Martin, a four-year Brown starter who was part of the winningest class in school history (63-45 record from 2000-01 through 2003-04). Martin, an assistant at his alma mater in 2005-06 before tagging along with coach Glen Miller to Penn, helped the Bears' Class of 2004 compile a four-year 39-17 Ivy League mark - the best by a conference member other than Penn and Princeton since 1970.

But what Martin and any other Brown player never has achieved is be part of a 20-win season. After Harvard and Northwestern reached the 20-win plateau for the first time in school annals in 2009-10, Brown and the following two other Eastern schools - Colgate and New Hampshire - are the only institutions never to post a 20-win campaign despite being at the NCAA Division I level more than 50 years:

School Most Victories (Season/Coach) Sizing Up Longstanding Futility
Brown 19-10 (2007-08/Craig Robinson) one winning record in last eight years
Colgate 18-10 (1992-93/Jack Bruen) and 18-14 (2007-08/Emmett Davis) three winning records in last 17 years
New Hampshire 19-9 (1994-95/Gib Chapman) 17 consecutive losing seasons

Oh Davey! Oldest MLB Manager Johnson Oversees Nationals Young Stars

Davey Johnson, MLB's oldest manager at 69, is generating major headlines with the first-place Washington Nationals overseeing the development of prodigies Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper. It shouldn't be that much of a surprise because Johnson finished first or second 11 times in his first 15 seasons as a big league skipper. But he had to dust off his managerial resume after being away from that role for about a dozen years. The A.L. Manager of the Year in 1997 with the Baltimore Orioles directed the New York Mets to victory over the Orioles in the 1986 World Series. His managerial record in 14 seasons with the Cincinnati Reds, New York Mets, Orioles and Los Angeles Dodgers was 1,148-888 (.564).

Overlooked in any review of Johnson's background is the fact he played college basketball for Texas A&M, averaging 1.7 ppg in his only varsity season (1961-62) with the Aggies before signing a pro baseball contract. The four-time All-Star hit .261 as an infielder in a 13-year career (1965 through 1975, 1977 and 1978) with the Orioles, Atlanta Braves, Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs. He earned three straight A.L. Gold Gloves as a second baseman with the Orioles from 1969 through 1971 and slugged 43 (N.L. runner-up) of his 136 career homers for the Braves in 1973 after appearing in four World Series with the Orioles (1966, 1969, 1970 and 1971). Owns the distinction of being the only player to have hit behind both Hank Aaron and Japan's all-time home-run king, Sadaharu Oh.

Before hitting a home run monitoring Strasburg and Harper, Johnson had previous experience dealing with tumult surrounding the high expectations of some other first-round draft choices. Infielder Gregg Jeffries, a first-round pick in 1985, reached the bigs when Johnson was managing the Mets and went on to lead the N.L. in doubles with 40 in 1990 in Johnson's final year with them.

Moreover, what is little known about Johnson is that he also briefly managed Dan "The Sundown Kid" Thomas on a Miami Amigos team that was in first place when the Inter-American League folded after only three months in 1979 (five other franchises in Caracas, Panama, Puerto Rico, Maracaibo and Santo Domingo). Thomas had been a first-round pick of the Milwaukee Brewers in 1972 (sixth pick overall) ahead of eventual All-Stars Dick Ruthven, Dave Chalk, Scott McGregor and Chet Lemon. Thomas, despite not playing from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday observing the holy day for the religious sect he joined (Worldwide Church of God) to try to cope with depression, was the Brewers' cleanup hitter in 1977 until their frustration with a less-than-fulltime player led them to demote and subsequently release him. Thomas, after winning the triple crown in the Eastern League in 1976, drove in Aaron for his first major-league RBI during a September call-up. Commissioner Bud Selig was Milwaukee's president at the time.

Thomas had high school and college coaches who were former college basketball players like Johnson. Thomas' baseball coach with Southern Illinois, Itchy Jones, the 18th individual in NCAA Division I history to win 1,000 games, averaged 8.9 ppg for the Salukis in 1956-57. Dan Radison, one of Thomas' teammates with SIU's 1971 College World Series squad, was fired as first-base coach by the Nationals when Johnson was hired the middle of last season.

Thomas' high school basketball coach in Dupo, Ill., a small railroad town just across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, was Cal Neeman, a seven-year catcher who also played with the Cubs and Phillies among five clubs before ending his MLB career in Washington with the Senators in 1963. Neeman was Illinois Wesleyan's leading scorer in basketball as a freshman in 1947-48 with 12 ppg. The next year, he set a school single-season scoring record in helping the school compile a 19-6 record and capture the College Conference of Illinois championship. Three of the defeats were on the road against perennial powers DePaul, Duquesne and Seton Hall.

Yes, it's a small world after all. Rice center Kendall Rhine Sr., one of Johnson's fellow sophomore basketball opponents in the SWC, was also from Dupo. Rhine, an all-league second-team selection that season en route to leading the Owls in scoring and rebounding all three years before averaging 9 ppg and 11 rpg for the ABA's Houston Mavericks in 1968-69, had a 6-7 son with the same name play basketball for Georgia under Hugh Durham before being selected by the Houston Astros in the first round of the 1992 MLB June amateur draft (37th pick overall).

Additional former Aggie hoopsters pre-Johnson who played at least seven MLB seasons were outfielders Beau Bell and Wally Moon. Bell, a two-year basketball letterman in the early 1930s, hit .297 with the St. Louis Browns, Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians from 1935 through 1941. In 1936, he hit .344 with 123 RBI and 100 runs scored for the Browns. The next season, the All-Star led the A.L. in hits (218) and doubles (51) while hitting .340 with 117 RBI. He coached his alma mater to the 1951 College World Series in his first of eight campaigns from 1951 through 1958.

Moon, who averaged 4.3 ppg with the Aggies in 1948-49 and 1949-50, was a two-time All-Star who hit .289 with the St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers in 12 N.L. seasons from 1954 through 1965. The lefthanded swinger homered in his first at-bat en route to earning N.L. Rookie of the Year acclaim over Aaron in 1954 when Moon led the league in plate appearances (716) and ranked among the top six in hits (193), triples (9), runs (106) and stolen bases (18). The Gold Glove left fielder in 1960 between participating in two World Series with the Dodgers (1959 and 1965) finished fourth in the 1959 MVP voting ahead of Willie Mays (6th), Frank Robinson (9th) and Ken Boyer (10th) when he led the league in triples with 11.

Johnson is one of only six living men to have won a World Series ring as a player and manager, joining Alvin Dark, Joe Girardi, Lou Piniella, Mike Scioscia and Red Schoendienst. Dark and Piniella are among the following alphabetical list of former MLB managers who were college basketball players:

JOE ADCOCK, Louisiana State
First baseman hit .277 with 336 home runs and 1,122 RBI in 17 seasons from 1950 through 1966 with the Cincinnati Reds, Milwaukee Braves, Cleveland Indians and the Los Angeles/California Angels. He hit four homers and a double for the Braves against the Brooklyn Dodgers on July 31, 1954, setting a major league record for most total bases in a game (18). Adcock was the Braves' regular first baseman on 1957 and 1958 National League champions. He failed to get an extra-base hit in nine World Series games against the Yankees, but his sixth-inning single accounted for Game Five's only run in 1957 when Lew Burdette outdueled Whitey Ford. Adcock, who blasted a career-high 38 homers in 1956 between injury-plagued seasons, was an All-Star in 1960 and managed the Indians in 1967.

He played three seasons from 1944-45 through 1946-47 for LSU as a 6-4, 190-pound center. Leading scorer with 18.6 ppg for the 1945-46 Tigers team that compiled an 18-3 record and lost against Kentucky in the Southeastern Conference Tournament final. Set SEC Tournament record with 15 field goals in a game against Tulane in 1946.

WALTER ALSTON, Miami (Ohio)
Member of Baseball Hall of Fame managed the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers for 23 seasons from 1954 through 1976, winning seven National League pennants and three World Series. His managerial record was 2,040-1,613 (.558) with 23 one-year contracts. In eight All-Star Game assignments, Alston was the winning manager a record seven times. He struck out in his only major league at-bat with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1936.

The 6-2, 195-pound Alston, a charter member of his alma mater's Athletic Hall of Fame, lettered in basketball from 1932-33 through 1934-35. He scored 10 of Miami's 15 points in a 32-15 defeat against Indiana in his senior season.

JOHN "JOEY" AMALFITANO, Loyola Marymount
Infielder, primarily a second baseman, hit .244 with the New York/San Francisco Giants, Houston Colt .45's and Chicago Cubs in 10 seasons (1954, 1955 and 1960 through 1967). He posted a career-high .277 bating average with the Giants in 1960. Traded by the Colt .45's back to the Giants for Dick LeMay and Manny Mota on November 30, 1962. Also registered a 66-116 record as manager of the Cubs from 1979 to 1981.

Collected six points and six rebounds in eight basketball games for the Lions in 1952-53.

JOHN "JACK" BARRY, Holy Cross
Infielder, primarily a shortstop, hit .243 with the Philadelphia Athletics and Boston Red Sox in 11 A.L. seasons from 1908 through 1919. Ranked fifth in the league in RBI in 1913 with 85 for the Athletics as a key component of Connie Mack's first dynasty. Participated in five World Series, four with the champion, in a six-year span from 1910 through 1915. Compiled a 90-62 managerial record with the Red Sox in 1917 before winning more than 80 percent of his games coaching his alma mater for 40 years (including capturing the 1952 College World Series).

The 5-9 Barry was a basketball letterman for the Crusaders in 1908.

LOU BOUDREAU, Illinois
Hall of Fame infielder hit .295 in 15 seasons from 1938 through 1952 with the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox. Managed Indians, Red Sox, Kansas City Athletics and Chicago Cubs, starting his managerial career at the age of 24 in 1942. As player-manager in 1948, the shortstop led Cleveland to the A.L. title and earned MVP honors by hitting .355 with 116 RBI. He hit a modest .273 in the World Series. The seven-time All-Star led the A.L. with 45 doubles on three occasions (1941, 1944 and 1947) and paced the league in batting average in 1944 (.327). Ranked among the A.L. top 10 in batting average five times in a six-year span from 1943 through 1948.

Played two varsity basketball seasons for Illinois (1936-37 and 1937-38) under coach Doug Mills. As a 5-11 sophomore, Boudreau led the Illini in scoring with 8.7 ppg as the team shared the Big Ten Conference title. Compiled an 8.8 average the next year. After helping the Illini upset St. John's in a game at Madison Square Garden, the New York Daily News described him as "positively brilliant" and said he "set up countless plays in breathtaking fashion." Averaged 8.2 ppg for Hammond (Ind.) in the National Basketball League in 1938-39. He was one of three individuals to coach Hammond the next season, compiling a 1-4 record.

ALVIN DARK, Louisiana State/Louisiana-Lafayette
Three-time All-Star infielder hit .289 in 14 years (1946 and 1948 through 1960) with the Boston Braves, New York Giants, St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies. He hit a career-high .322 with the Braves in 1948 when he won the Rookie of the Year award. Dark led the N.L. in doubles with the Giants with 41 in 1951 and paced the league's shortstops three times each in putouts and double plays. Ranked among the N.L. top 10 in hits seven times in a 10-year stretch from 1948 through 1957. He hit .323 in three World Series ('48 with Braves; '51 and '54 with Giants). Dark compiled a 994-954 record in 13 years (1961-64, 1966-71, 1974, 1975, 1977) as manager of the Giants, Kansas City/Oakland A's, Cleveland Indians and San Diego Padres. He won the 1962 N.L. pennant with the Giants and 1974 World Series with Oakland.

As a sophomore in 1942, Dark was a 5-11, 160-pound tailback who led LSU in rushing (433 yards in 60 carries) and passing (completed 40 of 106 passes for 556 yards and five touchdowns). Third-round NFL draft choice by the Philadelphia Eagles in 1945 (25th pick overall). Member of LSU's 1942-43 basketball squad before entering military service (Marine Corps V-12 program) during World War II. Dark, known as the "Swamp Fox," was five-sport letterman at Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now Louisiana-Lafayette) during 1943-44 when he led the Bulldogs to an Oil Bowl victory over Arkansas A&M in Houston with a TD run, TD pass, field goal and three PATs.

LARRY DOBY, Virginia Union
Outfielder hit .283 with 253 home runs and 969 RBI in a 13-year career from 1947 through 1959 with the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox. The first black player in the American League twice led the A.L. in homers (32 in 1952 and 1954). He was the first African-American to lead a league in homers (1952 and 1954) and the first to participate in the World Series (1948). Hit 20 or more round-trippers eight consecutive seasons from 1949 through 1956 while finishing among the A.L. top nine in slugging percentage each year. The seven-time All-Star drove in 100 or more runs five times, leading the A.L. with 126 in 1954 when the Indians won 111 games before being swept by the New York Giants in the World Series. Appeared in 1948 and 1954 World Series with the Indians, winning Game 4 in '48 with a homer off Braves star Johnny Sain. Doby managed the White Sox for most of 1978 (37-50 record).

The 6-1, 180-pounder attended LIU on a basketball scholarship but transferred to Virginia Union prior to the start of the season after Uncle Sam summoned him for World War II service. Doby was told Virginia Union had a ROTC program and he could complete his freshman season before being drafted. He became eligible the second semester of the 1942-43 season and was a reserve guard on a team that won the CIAA title.

JIM FANNING, Buena Vista (Iowa)
Catcher hit .170 in 64 games with the Chicago Cubs in four years from 1954 through 1957. Long-time MLB executive managed the Montreal Expos to a 116-103 record in three years the first half of the 1980s. His biggest trades as general manager with the Expos involved Rusty Staub (acquired from Houston Astros and shipped to New York Mets).

He collected 25 points for Buena Vista in 1947-48 and 1948-49.

KERBY FARRELL, Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.)
First baseman hit .262 for the Boston Braves and Chicago White Sox in three seasons from 1943 through 1945. Three-time Minor League Manager of the Year (1954, 1956 and 1961) managed the Cleveland Indians to a 76-77 record in 1957.

Key player for a couple of strong FHC basketball squads in the mid-1930s.

FRANKIE FRISCH, Fordham
Hall of Famer compiled a run of 11 consecutive .300 seasons and set fielding records for chances and assists with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1927. As player-manager with the Cards, he instilled the rollicking all-out style of hardnosed play that prompted a team nickname of "The Gashouse Gang." His season strikeout total topped 20 only twice en route to a .316 average in his 19-year career, which also included a stint with the New York Giants. N.L. MVP in 1931 when he led the league in stolen bases for the third of three times.

According to his bio in Total Baseball, "The Fordham Flash" captained the Rams' basketball squad. In 1925, Frisch officiated the first-ever game played in the Rose Hill Gym (the oldest NCAA Division I facility in the nation).

DALLAS GREEN, Delaware
Compiled a 20-22 pitching record in eight seasons from 1960 through 1967 with the Philadelphia Phillies, Washington Senators and New York Mets. Managed the Phillies to victory over the Kansas City Royals in the 1980 World Series. Assembled a 395-406 managerial record with the Phillies and Mets.

Green played two seasons of varsity basketball for the Blue Hens, averaging 6.5 ppg and 5.3 rpg as a sophomore in 1953-54 and 12.1 ppg as a junior in 1954-55, when the 6-5 center was the school's second-leading scorer and rebounder (10.6 rpg).

MIKE HARGROVE, Northwestern Oklahoma State
First baseman hit .290 with the Texas Rangers, San Diego Padres and Cleveland Indians in 12 years from 1974 through 1985. Rookie of the Year when he posted a career-high .323 batting average (fifth in A.L.). Lefthander earned a spot on the A.L. All-Star team in 1975. Compiled a 1,188-1,173 managerial record for the Indians, Baltimore Orioles and Seattle Mariners in 16 A.L. seasons from 1991 through 2007, guiding Cleveland to five consecutive Central Division titles from 1995 through 1999.

The 6-0, 190-pounder (class of '72) is the school's last athlete to letter in all three major sports (including football).

GIL HODGES, St. Joseph's (Ind.)/Oakland City (Ind.)
Dead-pull hitter had a .273 batting average with 370 home runs and 1,274 RBI in an 18-year playing career with the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets. Became a three-time Gold Glove first baseman after being switched from catcher by manager Leo Durocher because of the emergence of Roy Campanella. Eight-time All-Star swatted four home runs against the Braves on August 31, 1950. The 6-1 1/2, 200-pounder drove in more than 100 runs seven consecutive seasons from 1949 through 1955 and hammered 20 or more homers 11 straight years from 1949 through 1959. Finished among the N.L. top three in homers four times in a five-year span from 1950 through 1954. Hodges, who hit 14 grand slams, achieved career highs in 1954 by hitting .304 with league runner-up totals of 42 homers and 130 RBI. He appeared in seven World Series. After a woeful 0-for-21 performance in a 1952 World Series loss to the Yankees, he led the Dodgers' regulars with a .364 World Series average the next year. Hodges homered in each of his last four World Series with the Dodgers, including blasts that won 1956's Game One vs. the Yanks and 1959's Game Four vs. the White Sox. Hodges hit the first homer in Mets history in 1962 before he was traded to the Senators for OF Jim Piersall the next year. Managed the "Miracle Mets" to the 1969 World Series championship, compiling a 660-753 record (.467) with the Senators and Mets in nine years from 1963 through 1971.

Gil and his brother (Bob), natives of Petersburg, Ind., enrolled at St. Joseph's (Ind.) in the fall of 1941. Gil, a Marine who spent 18 months in the Pacific with 80 of those days in combat on Okinawa, later attended Oakland City, where he played basketball in 1947 and 1948. Morris Klipsch, a Petersburg auto dealer, says Gil may have liked basketball as much as baseball. "I recall him saying one fall after the Dodgers season was over that he would like to join a pro basketball team," Klipsch said.

DON KESSINGER, Mississippi
Shortstop hit .252 in 16 seasons from 1964 through 1979 with the Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago White Sox. Managed the White Sox in 1979 before becoming coach at his alma mater. Led N.L. shortstops in putouts three times, assists four times and double plays four times. The 6-1, 170-pound switch-hitter played in six All-Star Games in a seven-year span from 1968 through 1974. His best season was 1969 when he scored 109 runs (fourth in N.L.), had 181 hits (seventh), stroked 38 doubles (runner-up) and earned one of his two Gold Gloves.

Selected to the 10-man All-Southeastern Conference team all three of his varsity seasons from 1961-62 through 1963-64 while finishing among the nation's top 45 scorers each year. In scoring for all games, he ranked third in the SEC as a sophomore (21.4 ppg), second as a junior (21.8 ppg) and second as a senior (23.5 ppg). He scored 49 points on 22-of-28 field-goal shooting against Tulane on February 2, 1963, and exploded for 48 points at Tennessee 10 nights later. Excerpt from school guide: "One of the nation's most gifted athletes, he features every shot in the book but the specifics are one-handed push shots, usually a jumper, and driving layups." One of his sons, Keith, earned two basketball letters at Ole Miss before eventually reaching the major leagues as an infielder with the Cincinnati Reds.

HARVEY KUENN, Wisconsin
Infielder-outfielder hit .303 in 15 years from 1952 through 1966 with the Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies. In his career with the Tigers, he led the A.L. in batting average once (.353 in 1959), hits four times (209 in 1953 when he was rookie of the year, 201 in 1954, 196 in 1956 and 198 in 1959) and doubles on three occasions (38 in 1955, 39 in 1958 and 42 in 1959). Ranked among the A.L. top seven in batting average seven times (1953-54-55-56-58-59-60). He went 1 for 12 (.083) in 1962 World Series with the Giants. Kuenn compiled a 160-118 record as manager of the Milwaukee Brewers in 1982 and 1983, guiding them to the World Series in his first season.

Played in five games for Wisconsin's basketball team in the 1951-52 season. The 6-2, 185-pounder missed all eight of his field-goal attempts and hit three of seven free throws.

DAVEY LOPES, Iowa Wesleyan
Four-time All-Star second baseman hit .263 with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland A's, Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros in 16 seasons from 1972 through 1987. Led the N.L. in stolen bases in back-to-back campaigns in 1975 (77) and 1976 (63) after finishing runner-up in 1974 (59). Swiped five bases in a game on August 24, 1974, to tie a 70-year-old N.L. record before establishing a since-broken N.L. mark with 38 consecutive successful thefts the next year. Pilfered 47 bases at age 39. Appeared in four World Series with the Dodgers in an eight-year span from 1974 through 1981, swatting two homers in Game One of the 1978 World Series against the New York Yankees. Posted a .424 batting average in postseason competition with runners in scoring position. Compiled a 144-195 managerial record for the Milwaukee Brewers in three years from 2000 through 2002.

The 5-9 NAIA All-District 15 selection averaged 16.9 ppg and 3.4 rpg as a freshman in 1964-65 and 12.1 ppg as a sophomore in 1965-66 before transferring to Washburn (Kan.).

TED LYONS, Baylor
Member of Baseball Hall of Fame spent his entire 21-year career with the Chicago White Sox (1923 through 1942 and 1946) after never playing in the minors. Managed the White Sox from 1946 through 1948. Three-time 20-game winner compiled a 260-230 record and 3.67 ERA in 594 games, completing almost three-fourths of his 484 starts. Righthander pitched a no-hitter against the Boston Red Sox in 1926. In 1939, the All-Star hurled 42 consecutive innings without issuing a walk. Ranked among the A.L. top six in ERA nine times, including a league-best 2.10 mark in 1942.

Earned four basketball letters with Baylor from 1919-20 through 1922-23. Consensus first-team selection on All-Southwest Conference squad as a sophomore and senior.

MEL McGAHA, Arkansas
Former manager of the Cleveland Indians (1962) and Kansas City Athletics (June 11, 1964-May 14, 1965). Compiled a 123-173 record (.416).

The first player in Arkansas history to earn four letters in basketball (1943-44 through 1946-47). Played for the New York Knickerbockers of the Basketball Association of America in 1948-49.

SAM MELE, New York University
Major league outfielder for 10 years from 1947 through 1956 and manager of the Minnesota Twins for seven years from 1961 through 1967. Hit .267 in 1,046 games with the Boston Red Sox, Washington Senators, Chicago White Sox, Baltimore Orioles, Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians. Played for two different teams in a single season four times in a seven-year span from 1949 through 1955. Led the A.L. with 36 doubles for the Senators in 1951 and drove in six runs in one inning in a 1952 game for the White Sox. Compiled a 524-436 managerial record from 1961 through 1967 with the Twins, winning the 1965 A.L. title with a 102-60 mark.

The 6-0, 180-pound guard played two seasons of varsity basketball before entering the military. Named to the first five on the All-Metropolitan New York team as a sophomore in 1942-43 when he was the Violets' leading scorer in the NCAA Tournament (losses against Georgetown and Dartmouth).

LOU PINIELLA, Tampa
Hit .291 with 102 homers and 766 RBI as an outfielder during 18 seasons (1964 and 1968 through 1984) with the Baltimore Orioles, Cleveland Indians, Kansas City Royals and New York Yankees. Named A.L. Rookie of the Year in 1969 after hitting .282 for the Royals. All-Star in 1972 when he led the A.L. in doubles (33) and was runner-up in batting average (.312). Hit .319 in 22 World Series games with the Yankees in 1976, 1977, 1978 and 1981. Compiled a 1,835-1,713 managerial record in 23 years with the Yankees (1986 through 1988), Cincinnati Reds (1990 through 1992), Seattle Mariners (1993 through 2002), Tampa Bay Devil Rays (2003 through 2005) and Chicago Cubs (2007 to 2010). Led the Reds to a four-game sweep of the Oakland A's in the 1990 World Series.

Accepted a college basketball scholarship in 1961 after establishing a Tampa city single-season high school scoring record that stood until 1984. Less than a year after enrolling at UT, the 6-2 Piniella signed to play baseball with the Indians.

JIM RIGGLEMAN, Frostburg State (Md.)
Compiled a 662-824 managerial record (.445) in 12 years with the San Diego Padres (1992 to 1994), Chicago Cubs (1995 through 1999), Seattle Mariners (2008) and Washington Nationals (2009 to 2011). Resigned as the Nationals skipper in mid-season on the heels of them winning 11 of 12 games when the franchise failed to give him a contract extension.

Two-year basketball letterman averaged 7.2 ppg in early 1970s and was considered an outstanding ball-handling guard.

ROBERT "RED" ROLFE, Dartmouth
Third baseman hit .289 in 10 years with the New York Yankees. The four-time All-Star led the A.L. in triples with 15 in 1936 and paced the league in hits (213), doubles (46) and runs (139) in 1939. Rolfe appeared in six of the seven World Series from 1936 through his final season in 1942, hitting .400 against the New York Giants in '36. He compiled a 278-256 record in four years as manager of the Detroit Tigers from 1949 through 1952.

The 5-11 1/2, 170-pounder appeared in two basketball games for Dartmouth as a freshman in 1927-28 and four contests as a junior in 1929-30. He coached the Toronto Huskies of the Basketball Association of America for the last 44 games of the 1946-47 campaign after coaching Yale to a 48-28 record in four years from 1943-46. Rolfe has the highest winningest percentage (.632) of any individual who coached Yale more than two seasons.

GEORGE "BIRDIE" TEBBETTS, Providence
Four-time All-Star catcher hit .270 with the Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians in 14 A.L. seasons from 1936 through 1942 and 1946 through 1952. Hitless in 11 at-bats in 1940 World Series with the Tigers against the Cincinnati Reds. Compiled a 748-705 managerial record (.515) with the Reds, Milwaukee Braves and Indians from 1954 through 1958 and 1961 through 1966.

Scored six points in four games for PC in 1932.

BILL VIRDON, Drury (Mo.)
Outfielder hit .267 with the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates in 12 N.L. seasons from 1955 through 1965 and 1968. N.L. Rookie of the Year with the Cardinals in 1955 after he was acquired from the New York Yankees in a deal involving Enos Slaughter. Lefthanded swinger was runner-up in the N.L. in batting average in 1956 with a .319 mark (.211 for the Cards and .334 for the Pirates). Led the N.L. in triples in 1962 with 10 after ranking among the top five three straight years from 1956 through 1958. Gold Glove center fielder in 1962 two years after helping the Pirates win the World Series over the Yankees with three doubles and five RBI. Compiled a 995-921 managerial record with the Pirates, Yankees, Houston Astros and Montreal Expos in 13 seasons from 1972 through 1984. Boasts the distinction of being named Manager of the Year in both the American League (Yankees in 1974) and National League (Astros in 1980).

The 6-0 Virdon played basketball for Drury in 1949.

BOBBY WINKLES, Illinois Wesleyan
Coached Arizona State to College World Series titles in 1965, 1967 and 1969 before managing the California Angels in 1973 and through the first 74 games of 1974 (170-213 major league record). Reggie Jackson, Rick Monday and Sal Bando were among the more than 20 future major leaguers he coached at ASU.

Led Illinois Wesleyan in scoring as a senior in 1950-51 (12 ppg). The 5-9, 170-pound guard was a first-team selection in the College Conference of Illinois.

The Thrill is Gone: Name Schools Go From NCAA Headlines to Heartaches

A significant number of schools turn sheepish at the mention of recent NCAA Tournament success. Among Division I institutions making at least 10 NCAA playoff appearances, nine former Final Four participants - Holy Cross, Houston, Minnesota, New Mexico State, Oregon State, Princeton, San Francisco, Southern Methodist and Texas-El Paso - combined to go winless in the past 14 years.

DePaul, Oregon State and San Francisco each have won more than 20 NCAA tourney games but collaborated for only one win in the last 23 years (DePaul over Dayton in double overtime in 2004). Following is an alphabetical list of schools with at least 10 NCAA playoff appearances for which Sweet 16 is a distant memory:

School (Playoff Appearances) Recent NCAA Tournament Travails
Charlotte (11) no appearance last 7 years; winless last 11 years
Clemson (11) one victory last 15 years
Dayton (14) one victory last 22 years
DePaul (22) appeared once last 12 years; one victory last 23 years
George Washington (10) one victory last 18 years
Georgia (11) one victory last 16 years
Holy Cross (12) winless since 1953
Houston (19) winless last 28 years
Idaho State (11) winless last 35 years
Iowa (22) one victory last 13 years
La Salle (11) one victory last 29 years
Minnesota (11) winless last 15 years
New Mexico State (19) winless last 19 years
Old Dominion (11) one victory last 17 years
Oregon State (16) winless last 30 years
Penn (23) one victory last 32 years
Pepperdine (13) one victory last 30 years
Princeton (24) winless last 14 years
San Francisco (16) appeared once last 30 years
Santa Clara (11) no appearance last 16 years
Seattle (11) winless since 1964
Southern Methodist (10) no appearance last 19 years; winless last 24 years
Temple (30) one victory last 11 years
Texas-El Paso (17) winless last 20 years
Utah State (20) one victory last 42 years
Virginia (17) one victory last 17 years
Weber State (14) winless last 13 years
Wyoming (14) one victory last 25 years

Lost in the Shuffle: Legend's Limelight Totally Obscures Predecessor

A total of 39 current NCAA Division I schools feature all-time winningest coaches boasting in excess of 400 triumphs. The length of tenure necessary to win so many games makes it almost impossible to remember their predecessors. Anyone who can name 1/3 of the mentors they succeeded goes straight to the Trivia Hall of Fame.

Lou Watson's passing away this year triggered a question as to what other individuals are completely overshadowed after being succeeded by a coaching legend such as Indiana's Bob Knight. Knight combined with fellow record holders Phog Allen, Dale Brown, Gale Catlett, Denny Crum, Ed Diddle, Hec Edmundson, Jack Friel, Don Haskins, Lou Henson, Hank Iba, Frank Keaney, Bob McKillop, Ray Meyer, Lute Olson, Alex Severance, Norm Stewart, Bob Thomason, John Thompson Jr., Gary Williams, John Wooden and Ned Wulk for more than 12,000 victories at their respective schools where they established new standards. Who would have thought such achievements were in store after their predecessors collaborated to go more than 300 games below .500 over a cumulative 92 seasons.

One of the predecessor names in particular should surprise you. Incredibly, the only one of Kansas' 10 head coaches with a career losing record is the inventor of the sport (Dr. James Naismith). Naismith is among the following coaches who were succeeded by individuals posting more than 400 wins to become the all-time winningest mentor at the same institution:

School All-Time Winningest Coach Predecessor (W-L Record During Tenure)
Arizona Lute Olson (590 victories) Ben Lindsey (4-25 in 1983)
Arizona State Ned Wulk (405) Bill Kajikawa (88-137 from 1949-57)
Butler Tony Hinkle (549) Harlan O. "Pat" Page (94-29 from 1921-26)
California Clarence "Nibs" Price (449) Earl Wright (60-20 from 1921-24)
Connecticut Jim Calhoun (626) Dom Perno (139-114 from 1978-86)
Davidson Bob McKillop (426) Bobby Hussey (107-126 from 1982-89)
Dayton Don Donoher (437) Tom Blackburn (352-141 from 1948-64)
DePaul Ray Meyer (724) Bill Wendt (23-20 in 1941 & 1942)
Duke Mike Krzyzewski (854) Bill E. Foster (113-64 from 1975-80)
Georgetown John Thompson Jr. (596) Jack Magee (69-80 from 1967-72)
Houston Guy Lewis (592) Alden Pasche (135-116 from 1946-56)
Illinois Lou Henson (421) Gene Bartow (8-18 in 1975)
Indiana Bob Knight (659) Lou Watson (62-60 from 1966-69 & 1971)
Kansas Phog Allen (590) Dr. James Naismith (55-60 from 1899-1907)
Kentucky Adolph Rupp (875) John Mauer (40-14 from 1928-30)
Louisiana State Dale Brown (448) Press Maravich (76-86 from 1967-72)
Louisville Denny Crum (675) Howard Stacey (12-8 in 1971)
Maryland Gary Williams (461) Bob Wade (36-50 from 1987-89)
Missouri Norm Stewart (634) Bob Vanatta (42-80 from 1963-67)
Niagara Taps Gallagher (465) Bill McCarthy (44-35 from 1928-31)
North Carolina Dean Smith (879) Frank McGuire (164-58 from 1953-61)
Oklahoma State Hank Iba (655) Harold James (13-41 from 1932-34)
Oregon State Slats Gill (599) Robert Hager (115-53 from 1923-28)
Pacific Bob Thomason (414) Tom O'Neill (51-110 from 1983-88)
Princeton Pete Carril (514) Butch van Breda Kolff (103-31 from 1963-67)
Purdue Gene Keady (512) Lee Rose (50-18 in 1979 & 1980)
Rhode Island Frank Keaney (403) Fred Murray (9-8 in 1921)
St. John's Lou Carnesecca* (526) Frank Mulzoff (56-27 from 1971-73)
Syracuse Jim Boeheim (890) Roy Danforth (148-71 from 1969-76)
Temple John Chaney (516) Don Casey (151-94 from 1974-82)
Texas A&M Shelby Metcalf (438) Bobby Rogers (92-52 from 1958-63)
Texas-El Paso Don Haskins (719) Harold Davis (18-30 in 1960 & 1961)
UCLA John Wooden (620) Wilbur Johns (93-120 from 1940-48)
UNLV Jerry Tarkanian (509) John Bayer (44-36 from 1971-73)
Villanova Alex Severance (413) Doc Jacobs (62-56 from 1930-36)
Washington Hec Edmundson (488) Stub Allison (7-8 in 1920)
Washington State Jack Friel (495) Karl Schlademan (18-27 in 1927 & 1928)
West Virginia Gale Catlett (439) Joedy Gardner (59-53 from 1975-78)
Western Kentucky Ed Diddle (759) L.T. Smith (3-1 in 1922)

*Carnesecca succeeded Joe Lapchick when he served his first stint with St. John's from 1965-66 through 1969-70

Immortality and Honor: College Hoopdom's Contributions to Memorial Day

At times, we freely recall the full spectrum of players ranging from knuckleheads to knuckle-down heads of corporations. A Memorial Day weekend generates sobering reminders of what is really important to our freedom. College basketball contributions include the following individuals:

Baylor had some "soft" players this past season who played with the fervor of a man holding his female companion's purse at the mall much of a shopping excursion afternoon. But Baylor is believed to be the only non- service academy in America to have two former athletes go on to win the Congressional Medal of Honor. Both men, Jack Lummus and John "Killer" Kane, earned the nation's highest military honor for heroics in World War II Lummus played football, basketball and baseball for the Bears from 1938 through 1941. He was an All-Southwest Conference center fielder before signing with the NFL's New York Giants.

After one year of pro football, Lummus joined the U.S. Marines and was a platoon leader in the initial days of fighting on Iwo Jima. While leading a charge on enemy positions, Lummus stepped on a land mine and lost both legs. Despite heavy bleeding, he led his platoon to knock out several pockets of Japanese fire, a vital part of the U.S. victory. Alas, Lummus died of his wounds shortly after the battle.

Kane, who also played football and basketball, was one of the survivors on Baylor's ill-fated 1927 basketball squad that lost 10 of its 21-member traveling party in a bus-train wreck en route to Austin, Tex. As a result of the "Immortal Ten" tragedy, the remainder of the first of coach Ralph Wolf's 15 seasons was cancelled, and the first highway overpass in Texas was constructed.

Kane joined the Army Air Corps in 1932 and soon became a bomber commander of legendary proportions. It was said he was the best pilot and toughest commander in the Air Corps. It was often debated who feared him more - the Germans or his own men.

On August 1, 1943, Kane led what at the time was the deadliest air battle in history - a low-level, long-range bombing raid on Hitler's oil-refining complex in Rumania. The site produced a major portion of the Axis' fuel and was one of the most heavily-guarded locations in history.

The heroism exhibited by ex-hoopsters doesn't stop there. Al Brown, Creighton's leading scorer in 1925-26, survived the infamous Bataan Death March in the Philippines. Ex-players warranting salutes for making the supreme sacrifice include:

  • Center Bill Menke, the third-leading scorer for Indiana's 1940 NCAA champion who supplied a team-high 10 points in the Hoosiers' national semifinal victory over Duquesne, later became a Navy pilot and served in World War II. In January 1945, he was declared missing in action (and presumed dead) when he didn't return from a flight in the Caribbean.

  • Thomas P. Hunter, a three-year letterman who was a sophomore member of Kansas' 1940 runner-up, was killed in action against the Japanese on Guam, July 21, 1944, while fighting with the Ninth Marines as a first lieutenant. Hunter was elected posthumously as captain of the Jayhawks' 1945-46 squad that compiled a 19-2 record.

  • All 11 regulars on Pittsburgh's 1941 Final Four team participated in World War II and one of them, guard Bob Artman, was killed in action.

  • Nile Kinnick, Iowa's Heisman Trophy winner as a quarterback-halfback in 1939, played basketball for the Hawkeyes during his sophomore year, averaging 6.1 ppg to finish as their second-leading scorer. After bypassing pro football to attend law school, he was killed in a plane crash in 1943 while serving in the Navy.

  • Curtis Popham, Texas' co-captain in 1943, was killed during WWII.

  • Carleton (MN) forward Wayne Sparks, a "Little All-American" in 1936-37, died in a bomber crash during WWII.

  • Four-time All-MCAU forward Eugene "Peaches" Westover, class of '38 for Drury (MO), was killed January 1, 1945, at the Battle of the Bulge.

  • Four-sport letterman Tommy Peters, who averaged 17.5 ppg to lead the southern Conference in scoring in 1942-43, died during WWII after only one season with Davidson.

Numerous standout players had their college playing careers sidetracked by WWII. Here is a list of All-Americans who had their college days interrupted in the mid-1940s while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces:

Air Force - Charles Black (Kansas) and Jack Parkinson (Kentucky).

Army - Don Barksdale (UCLA), Lew Beck (Oregon State), A.L. Bennett (Oklahoma A&M), Gale Bishop (Washington State), Vince Boryla (Notre Dame/Denver), Harry Boykoff (St. John's), Bob Brannum (Kentucky), Arnie Ferrin (Utah), Alex Groza (Kentucky), Ralph Hamilton (Indiana), Walt Kirk (Illinois), Allie Paine (Oklahoma), Don Rehfeldt (Wisconsin), Jack Smiley (Illinois), Odie Spears (Western Kentucky) and Gerry Tucker (Oklahoma).

Marine Corps - Aud Brindley (Dartmouth), John Hargis (Texas), Merlin Marty (Loras), Andy Phillip (Illinois), Gene Rock (southern California) and Kenny Sailors (Wyoming).

Navy - Bobby Cook (Wisconsin), Howie Dallmar (Stanford/Penn), Dick Dickey (North Carolina State), Bob Faught (Notre Dame), Harold Gensichen (Western Michigan), Wyndol Gray (Bowling Green State), Hal Haskins (Hamline), Leo Klier (Notre Dame), Dick McGuire (St. John's) and John Oldham (Western Kentucky).

In an incredible achievement, Phillip and Tucker returned to first-team All-American status in 1946-47 after missing three seasons while serving in the military. Black and Sailors also returned to All-American acclaim after missing two seasons. Meanwhile, Whitey Skoog served in the U.S. Navy before becoming a three-time All- American with Minnesota.

Fallen heroes also emerged post-WWII. Don Holleder, who averaged 9.3 ppg as a junior and 6.8 ppg as a senior for Army in the mid-1950s, was a major during the Vietnam War in October, 1967, when he was killed by a sniper's bullet in an ambush 40 miles from Saigon as he hurled himself into enemy fire attempting to rescue wounded comrades.

Among the military leaders over the years with a hoop background include:

ROBERT B. ADAMS, Canisius
Served in the U.S. Army for 31 years, retiring with the rank of Major General, before he was appointed Commissioner of the New York State Office of General Services by Governor Mario Cuomo. Listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who of American Business Leaders. Third-leading scorer (9.2 points per game) as a senior for Canisius' first NCAA Tournament team in 1955.

MERT BAXTER, Nevada
Army General was in charge of San Francisco Presidio. He had a distinguished military career in Korea, Vietnam and Germany. Baxter was a four-year letterman (1950-53) who led the Wolf Pack in scoring as a sophomore and junior.

MAJ. GEN. ROBERT BROWN, Army
Assumed command of the U.S. Army Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning (GA) in early November 2010. The 6-5 Brown averaged 13.8 ppg for Army from 1977-78 through 1980-81, leading the Cadets in scoring as a junior (16.4 ppg) and senior (19 ppg) under coach Mike Krzyzewski.

JOHN DICK, Oregon
Retired with the rank of Admiral after 32 years of service in the U.S. Navy. Commanded the aircraft carrier Saratoga for two years and served as chief of staff for all carrier forces in the Western Pacific. Starting junior forward for the first NCAA Tournament champion in 1939 when he led the Ducks in scoring in three playoff games, including a game-high 15 points in the final against Ohio State. NCAA consensus first-team All-American the next season when he paced the Pacific Coast Conference Northern Division in scoring with 183 points in 16 games.

THOMAS J. HAMILTON, Navy
Rear admiral was executive officer of the famous carrier Enterprise and then commanded the escort carrier Savo Island at the end of World War II. Three-year letterman was senior captain of Navy's 15-2 basketball team in 1926-27. Also competed for the academy's undefeated national championship football squad in 1926, kicking the game-tying point that gave Navy a 21-21 come-from-behind tie with Army before the largest crowd ever to watch a football game (110,000 at Soldier's Field in Chicago). Named the 88th most influential student-athlete in 2006 when the NCAA celebrated its centennial anniversary.

BRUCE HARRIS, Tennessee Tech
Four-star general in the U.S. Army. Averaged 6.8 points and 6.8 rebounds per game for the Golden Eagles as a senior in 1954-55.

HARRY HILL, Navy
In September, 1943, during World War II in the South Pacific theater, he became Commander Amphibious Group Two, and in that capacity participated in the capture of Tarawa, and later in operations against the Gilberts, Marshalls, Marianas, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. He relieved the Commander Fifth Amphibious Force at Okinawa in April 1945, and commanded the support operations of that force until that island was secured at the end of June. A destroyer named after the admiral was decommissioned in May, 1998. Navy's first All-American (first-team selection by the Helms Foundation in 1911 when team went 10-1).

GEN. JIM JONES, Georgetown
Four-star general was designated in mid-August 1999 to serve as the Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps. His military decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, and the Bronze Star, among others. The 6-4 reserve frontcourter collected four points and six rebounds in five games for the Hoyas in 1963-64.

WILLIAM P. LAWRENCE, Navy
Vice Admiral was awarded the Silver Star and Distinguished Service Medal. In 1958, he became the first naval aviator to fly twice the speed of sound in a Navy aircraft (the F8U-3 Crusader III). While Commanding Officer of Fighter Squadron 143, he was shot down over North Vietnam in June 1967 and held as a POW until March 1973. During his imprisonment, Lawrence composed a poem entitled "Oh Tennessee, My Tennessee," which was designated by the state legislature as the official poem of the State of Tennessee. Basketball letterman at the naval academy in 1948-49 when he averaged 2.9 ppg.

DICK LINTHICUM, UCLA
After eight years in the movie industry, he served 10 years in the U.S. Navy throughout the Pacific, then 16 years with the Central Intelligence Agency before retiring as USNR Commander. He was awarded the CIA Certificate of Merit as he ended his distinguished career of serving his country in many parts of the world. A 1931 and 1932 All-American, the first in any sport at UCLA, Linthicum was Bruins captain in 1932 and leader in Southern Division scoring in the Pacific Coast Conference over a three-year period. The forward was twice All-Southern Division forward and once All-PCC.

MIKE McRANEY, Mississippi State
Served as chief of information at the Pentagon before retiring from the U.S. Air Force as a brigadier general. He lettered in basketball as a sophomore and junior (1956-57 and 1957-58), averaging 1.2 points per game in his three-year varsity career.

ADMIRAL MIKE MULLEN, Navy
The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Obama Administration. In controversial battles within the Pentagon, Mullen was an activist taking unprecedented stands on matters of military doctrine - emphasizing troops over weapons systems and counterinsurgency over the use of overwhelming force. Played basketball for the plebes in 1964-65 but never competed at the varsity level.

Generally speaking, following is an alphabetical list of Air Force basketball players who went on to make the rank of general:

USAF Player (Graduation Year) Rank as General
Bob Beckel (1959) Lieutenant General
Anthony Burshnick (1960) Lieutenant General
Howell M. Estes III (1965) General
Ellwood P. Hinman III (1964) Brigadier General
Charles R. Holland (1968) Lieutenant General
Michael D. Pavich (1964) Major General
James P. Ulm (1961) Brigadier General
Henry Viccellio (1962) General

Key: Brigadier General (1 star); Major General (2 stars); Lieutenant General (3 stars); General (4 stars)

Growing Pains: Robinson and Green Started Slow But Finished Fast

Neither Thomas Robinson (Kansas) nor Draymond Green (Michigan State) generated national headlines in their first two seasons before blossoming into NCAA unanimous first-team All-Americans.

Robinson, who was anything but one of the country's most dominant players when he scored 2.5 ppg as a freshman in 2009-10, improved as much as anyone during his college career and probably would have become consensus national player of the year except for the emergence of Kentucky freshman phenom Anthony Davis. If not for Davis, Robinson would have posted the lowest average for any national player of the year's first season at the major-college level since the initial award by UPI in 1955.

Admiration for Green's significant impact following a scoring average of 3.3 ppg as a freshman in 2008-09 won't end anytime soon, either. Green is a classic example of why fans shouldn't put too much stock in freshman statistics. Green flourished as a versatile performer although his field-goal shooting dropped nine percent his final two seasons from his first two campaigns.

Robinson, Green, Kris Joseph (3.4 ppg with Syracuse in 2008-09) and NCAA second-teamer Tyler Zeller (3.1 ppg with North Carolina in 2008-09) aren't the only All-Americans who endured growing pains. Robinson, forgoing his senior season after declaring for the NBA draft, joined the following alphabetical list of players who averaged fewer than three points per game as a freshman before eventually earning All-American acclaim:

Eventual All-American Pos. School Freshman Scoring Average
Cole Aldrich C Kansas 2.8 ppg in 2007-08
Lorenzo Charles F North Carolina State 2.2 ppg in 1981-82
Keith Edmonson G Purdue 1.3 ppg in 1978-79
Aaron Gray C Pittsburgh 1.7 ppg in 2003-04
Tom Gugliotta F North Carolina State 2.7 ppg in 1988-89
Roy Hamilton G UCLA 1.2 ppg in 1975-76
Jeff Jonas G Utah 2.8 ppg in 1973-74
Ted Kitchel F Indiana 1.7 ppg in 1979-80
Bob Kurland C Oklahoma A&M 2.5 ppg in 1942-43
Tom LaGarde C North Carolina 2.2 ppg in 1973-74
Kenyon Martin C Cincinnati 2.8 ppg in 1996-97
John Pilch G Wyoming 2.4 ppg in 1946-47
Thomas Robinson F Kansas 2.5 ppg in 2009-10
Steve Scheffler C Purdue 1.5 ppg in 1986-87
Earl Tatum G-F Marquette 1.5 ppg in 1972-73
Kurt Thomas F-C Texas Christian 0.8 ppg in 1990-91
Al Thornton F Florida State 2.8 ppg in 2003-04
B.J. Tyler* G DePaul 2.9 ppg in 1989-90

*Tyler became an All-American at Texas after transferring to his home state

NOTE: Oregon's Wally Borrevik (1.8 ppg in 1940-41), Wisconsin's Gene Englund (2.3 ppg in 1938-39), California's Darrall Imhoff (0.9 ppg in 1957-58), Kansas' Dean Kelley (0.8 in 1950-51), Purdue's Bob Kessler (2.3 ppg in 1933-34), Notre Dame's Leo Klier (2.7 in 1942-43), Oklahoma A&M's Gale McArthur (2.96 ppg in 1948-49), Notre Dame's Bob Rensberger (1.5 ppg in 1940-41) and Stanford's George Yardley (2.9 ppg in 1947-48) averaged fewer than three points per game as sophomores when freshmen weren't eligible to play varsity basketball before becoming All-Americans.

Generation Hex: Bob Boozer Might Be Most Overlooked Two-Time All-American

When Bob Boozer passed away last weekend in his hometown of Omaha, hoop aficionados endured a classic lack-of-proper-perspective example of the cult-of-personality outweighing amateurish hoops history. More sports columnists and self-proclaimed basketball experts were emotionally attached to the Bee Gees' Robin Gibbs dying rather than a two-time NCAA first-team All-American and 1960 Olympian on a star-studded squad that might have been better than the "1992 Dream Team." Sports commentators, columnists and producers either were overwhelmed by booze or are overvalued as much as they undervalued the Kansas State forward.

Granted, Boozer didn't seek the limelight during his playing career or in his post-playing days. For instance, Boozer was appointed to the Nebraska Parole Board in the 1990s and volunteered at Boys Town, the home for troubled youth. But has there ever been a more underappreciated two-time NCAA first-team All-American?

Boozer powered K-State to the 1958 Final Four as a junior and a #1 national ranking in the final 1958-59 poll as a senior. He averaged 22 points and 10.7 rebounds in six NCAA Tournament games, posting higher marks in both categories than playoff luminaries such as frontcourters Mark Aguirre, Len Bias, Patrick Ewing, Tyler Hansbrough, Marques Johnson, Christian Laettner, Danny Manning, Jamal Mashburn, Scott May, Alonzo Mourning, Sam Perkins, Keith Van Horn, Chris Webber, Sidney Wicks, Corliss Williamson and James Worthy.

It also wasn't as if Boozer's influence waned because he flopped as a pro inasmuch as the 6-8 power forward averaged 14.8 ppg and 8.1 rpg in 11 NBA seasons with six different franchises, including the 1971 titlist Milwaukee Bucks. The virtual news blackout regarding Boozer's death made one wonder how many other former All-Americans past and present are in the same vastly underrated category.

Unlike Boozer, numerous premier players are bound to be overlooked because they failed to take center stage in the NCAA playoffs or NIT. Notre Dame's Kevin O'Shea is the only four-time All-American in this category while Purdue's Terry Dischinger is the only three-time first-team All-American.

No multiple-season All-American has failed to appear in national postseason competition since the NCAA tourney expanded to at least 40 entrants in the late 1970s. Eight three-time All-Americans never participated in a "Big Dance." Following is an alphabetical list of 34 two-, three- and four-time All-Americans, seven with Minnesota, who did not compete in the NCAA Tournament or NIT since the start of national postseason competition in the late 1930s:

Player Pos. School All-American Years
Alvan Adams C Oklahoma 1974 and 1975
Billy Cunningham F North Carolina 1964 and 1965
Terry Dischinger F Purdue 1960 through 1962
Paul Ebert C Ohio State 1952 through 1954
Darrell Floyd G-F Furman 1955 and 1956
Robin Freeman G Ohio State 1955 and 1956
Dick Garmaker F Minnesota 1954 and 1955
Otto Graham F Northwestern 1943 and 1944
Dick Groat G Duke 1951 and 1952
Dale Hall F Army 1944 and 1945
Fred Hetzel F-C Davidson 1963 through 1965
Bailey Howell F-C Mississippi State 1958 and 1959
Lou Hudson F-G Minnesota 1965 and 1966
Dick Ives F Iowa 1944 and 1945
Ron Johnson C Minnesota 1959 and 1960
Leo Klier F Notre Dame 1944 and 1946
Ed Koffenberger C-F Duke 1946 and 1947
Jim McIntyre C Minnesota 1948 and 1949
Chuck Mencel G Minnesota 1953 and 1955
Max Morris C-F Northwestern 1945 and 1946
Don Nelson F-C Iowa 1961 and 1962
Kevin O'Shea G Notre Dame 1947 through 1950
Robert Parish C Centenary 1974 through 1976
Dave Schellhase F Purdue 1965 and 1966
Frank Selvy F Furman 1952 through 1954
Gene Shue F Maryland 1953 and 1954
Meyer "Whitey" Skoog F-G Minnesota 1949 through 1951
Doug Smart F-C Washington 1957 through 1959
Mychal Thompson C Minnesota 1977 and 1978
Rudy Tomjanovich F Michigan 1969 and 1970
Paul Westphal G Southern California 1971 and 1972
Freeman Williams G Portland State 1977 and 1978
Mark Workman C West Virginia 1951 and 1952
Rich Yunkus C Georgia Tech 1970 and 1971

Risky Business: Baron and Dempsey Hired Despite Dismal Marks Last Year

Jim Baron and Tommy Dempsey, coming off a season when they combined to win less than 1/3 of their games, joined the fortunate few coaches who were hired promptly after posting losing records. Baron, 7-24 with Rhode Island, aligned with Canisius after he was axed by the Rams while Dempsey, 13-19 with Rider, was lured to Binghamton.

Baron might have incurred the most defeats ever by a coach and yet immediately hook on with another school. At least Baron had a higher winning percentage than P.J. Carlesimo, who was 4-22 with Wagner in 1981-82 when he was hired by Seton Hall. Dempsey should be national coach of the year next season if he compiles a breakeven mark or better with Binghamton, which might have been the nation's worst team in 2011-12 with a 2-29 ledger.

However, betting on a penny stock can occasionally pay big dividends. Hall of Famers Bob Knight (11-13 mark in 1970-71 before Indiana came calling) and Mike Krzyzewski (9-17 in 1979-80 before Duke) each were coming off losing seasons with Army when they were hired by prestige schools where they eventually won multiple NCAA championships. Baron and Dempsey joined Krzyzewski and Knight's son (Pat) among the following active coaches hired by their current school despite coming off a season when they posted a losing record:

Active Coach Current School Losing Mark Previous Year When Hired
Jim Baron Canisius 7-24 with Rhode Island in 2011-12
Jeff Bzdelik Wake Forest 15-16 record with Colorado in 2009-10
Tommy Dempsey Binghamton 13-19 with Rider in 2011-12
Pat Knight Lamar 13-19 with Texas Tech in 2010-11
Mike Krzyzewski Duke 9-17 with Army with 1979-80
Greg McDermott Creighton 15-17 with Iowa State in 2009-10
Lorenzo Romar Washington 15-16 with Saint Louis in 2001-02
Joe Scott Denver 11-17 with Princeton in 2006-07
Billy Taylor Ball State 12-19 with Lehigh in 2006-07
Rex Walters San Francisco 15-18 with Florida Atlantic in 2007-08

Swan Song: Retiring Pacific Coach Bob Thomason Truly is One of a Kind

Pacific's Bob Thomason, the only active NCAA Division I mentor who became his alma mater's all-time winningest coach after earning all-conference first-team acclaim as a player, will retire after the 2012-13 campaign. A total of 33 individuals are coaching their DI alma maters but Syracuse's Jim Boeheim and Sacred Heart's Dave Bike are the only ones other than Thomason to be the all-time winningest coach.

John Gianelli, one of Thomason's teammates, went on to play with four different NBA teams for eight seasons from 1972-73 through 1979-80. Thomason is one of the following 63 active coaches, including eight from Princeton and Penn, who were all-conference selections in a DI alliance:

Active Coach Current School Alma Mater Conference All-League Honors
Steve Alford New Mexico Indiana Big Ten 1984, 1986 and 1987 (1st); 1985 (2nd)
Jerome Allen Penn Penn Ivy League 1993 through 1995 (1st)
Tommy Amaker Harvard Duke ACC 1987 (2nd)
Tony Barbee Auburn Massachusetts Atlantic 10 1991 and 1993 (2nd)
Tony Benford North Texas Texas Tech Southwest 1986 (2nd)
Tony Bennett Virginia Wisconsin-Green Bay Mid-Continent 1990 through 1992 (1st); 1989 (2nd)
Eddie Biedenbach UNC Asheville North Carolina State ACC 1966 and 1968 (1st)
Matt Brady James Madison Siena ECAC North Atlantic 1985 and 1987 (2nd)
Larry Brown Southern Methodist North Carolina ACC 1963 (1st); 1962 (2nd)
Milan Brown Holy Cross Howard University MEAC 1993 (1st)
Jason Capel Appalachian State North Carolina ACC 2001 and 2002 (3rd)
John Cooper Miami (oh) Wichita State Missouri Valley 1990 (2nd)
Paul Courtney Cornell Bucknell Patriot League 1991 and 1992 (1st)
Gravelle Craig Bethune-Cookman Cleveland State Mid-Continent 1993 (1st); 1992 (2nd)
Johnny Dawkins Stanford Duke ACC 1985 and 1986 (1st); 1983 and 1984 (2nd)
Jamie Dixon Pittsburgh Texas Christian SWC 1987 (2nd)
Billy Donovan Florida Providence Big East 1987 (1st); 1986 (3rd)
Bryce Drew Valparaiso Valparaiso Mid-Continent 1996 through 1998 (1st); 1995 (2nd)
Bruiser Flint Drexel St. Joseph's Atlantic 10 1987 (2nd)
Geno Ford Bradley Ohio University Mid-American 1997 (1st); 1996 (2nd)
Travis Ford Oklahoma State Kentucky SEC 1993 and 1994 (2nd)
Jerod Haase UAB Kansas Big Eight 1995 (2nd)
Mitch Henderson Princeton Princeton Ivy League 1998 (2nd)
Fred Hoiberg Iowa State Iowa State Big Eight 1995 (1st); 1994 (2nd)
George Ivory Arkansas-Pine Bluff Mississippi Valley State SWAC 1987 (1st)
Lewis Jackson Alabama State Alabama State SWAC 1983 and 1984 (1st)
Sydney Johnson Fairfield Princeton Ivy League 1996 and 1997 (1st)
Trent Johnson Texas Christian Boise State Big Sky 1978 (2nd)
Derek Kellogg Massachusetts Massachusetts Atlantic 10 1995 (3rd)
Andy Kennedy Mississippi UAB Sun Belt 1991 (1st); 1990 (2nd)
Lon Kruger Oklahoma Kansas State Big Eight 1973 and 1974 (1st); 1972 (2nd)
Larry Krystkowiak Utah Montana Big Sky 1984 through 1986 (1st)
Matt Langel Colgate Penn Ivy League 2000 (1st)
Jeff Lebo East Carolina North Carolina ACC 1988 (2nd)
Jim Les UC Davis Bradley Missouri Valley 1986 (1st)
Paul Lusk Jr. Missouri State Southern Illinois Missouri Valley 1994 (2nd)
Danny Manning Tulsa Kansas Big Eight 1986 through 1988 (1st); 1985 (2nd)
Cuonzo Martin Tennessee Purdue Big Ten 1994 and 1995 (1st)
Bashir Mason Wagner Drexel CAA 2007 (3rd)
Ray McCallum Detroit Ball State Mid-American 1981 through 1983 (1st); 1980 (2nd)
Mike McConathy Northwestern State Louisiana Tech Southland 1976 and 1977 (1st); 1975 (2nd)
Greg McDermott Creighton Northern Iowa Mid-Continent 1987 (2nd)
Sean Miller Arizona Pittsburgh Big East 1992 (2nd)
Mark Montgomery Northern Illinois Michigan State Big Ten 1992 (3rd)
Chris Mooney Richmond Princeton Ivy League 1993 (1st); 1994 (2nd)
Stew Morrill Utah State Gonzaga Big Sky 1974 (1st)
Dan Muller Illinois State Illinois State Missouri Valley 1998 (2nd)
Kevin Ollie Connecticut Connecticut Big East 1995 (3rd)
Louis Orr Bowling Green State Syracuse Big East 1980 (1st)
Lewis Preston Kennesaw State Virginia Military southern 1993 (2nd)
Craig Robinson Oregon State Princeton Ivy League 1982 and 1983 (1st); 1981 (2nd)
Joe Scott Denver Princeton Ivy League 1987 (2nd)
Bennie Seltzer Samford Washington State Pacific-10 1993 (1st)
Dave Simmons McNeese State Louisiana Tech Southland 1981 (1st); 1979 and 1980 (2nd)
Marty Simmons Evansville Evansville Midwestern Collegiate 1987 and 1988 (1st)
Bob Thomason Pacific Pacific WCAC 1971 (1st)
Brooks Thompson Texas-San Antonio Oklahoma State Big Eight 1994 (1st)
Wayne Tinkle Montana Montana Big Sky 1988 and 1989 (2nd)
Andy Toole Robert Morris Penn Ivy League 2002 (1st); 2003 (2nd)
Rex Walters San Francisco Kansas Big Eight 1992 and 1993 (1st)
Brian Wardle Green Bay Marquette C-USA 2001 (1st); 2000 (2nd)
Corliss Williamson Central Arkansas Arkansas SEC 1994 and 1995 (1st)
C.Y. Young Georgia Southern Georgia Southern Southern and TAAC 1994 (1st); 1992 and 1993 (2nd)

False Starts: BYU Atop List of Early Exits Marring NCAA Playoff Participation

The law of averages was with Brigham Young when it manufactured the greatest comeback in NCAA Tournament history, erasing a 25-point deficit to frustrate Iona, 78-72, in one of the First Four games. The rally prevented the Cougars from compiling their NCAA playoff-record 18th opening-round loss.

North Carolina A&T State has appeared in the NCAA playoffs the most times (nine) without winning a tournament game. Northeast Louisiana, now known as Louisiana-Monroe, is runner-up in this dubious category with an 0-7 record. But these winless universities still have a long way to go to join the ranks of the "quick exit" schools with more than a dozen opening-round defeats.

Connecticut, after absorbing nine opening-round losses in 17 years from 1951 through 1967, had the most opening-round setbacks for years. But the Huskies didn't incur an opening-round reversal for 28 years until suffering two in the last five seasons. St. John's suffered eight opening-round losses in a 20-year stretch from 1973 through 1992.

Maryland was the first school to incur at least 10 NCAA Tournament defeats but never absorb an opening-round setback until the Terrapins lost to Santa Clara in 1996. Missouri, Temple and West Virginia showed this year why they are on the following list of schools most prone to sustaining an opening-round defeat:

School (Playoff Losses) NCAA Tournament Opening-Round Defeats
Brigham Young (30) 17 (1950-57-65-69-72-79-80-87-90-92-95-01-03-04-07-08-09)
Princeton (28) 16 (1952-55-60-63-69-76-77-81-89-90-91-92-97-01-04-11)
Utah State (20) 16 (1939-63-71-75-79-80-83-88-98-00-03-05-06-09-10-11)
Temple (30) 14 (1944-64-67-70-72-79-90-92-95-98-08-09-10-12)
Missouri (25) 13 (1944-78-81-83-86-87-88-90-93-99-00-11-12)
St. John's (30) 13 (1961-68-73-76-77-78-80-84-88-92-98-02-11)
West Virginia (26) 13 (1955-56-57-58-62-65-67-83-86-87-92-09-12)

UK and UL Could Make Kentucky the Third State to Win Back-to-Back Titles

On the heels of Kentucky's success, Louisville will be among the preseason favorites to win the 2013 NCAA playoffs. The only time two different schools from the same state captured three consecutive NCAA titles was from 1960 through 1962 when Ohio State and Cincinnati reigned supreme. North Carolina was twice involved in back-to-back crowns with an in-state counterpart - 1982 and 1983 (N.C. State) plus 2009 and 2010 (Duke).

California is the only state with as many as four different universities win an NCAA Division I Tournament championship. Eight different states have had more than one school capture the NCAA DI Tournament title.

California (15) - California (1959), San Francisco (1955 and 1956), Stanford (1942), UCLA (1964-65-67-68-69-70-71-72-73-75-95)

North Carolina (11) - Duke (1991-92-01-10), North Carolina (1957-82-93-05-09), North Carolina State (1974 and 1983)

Kentucky (10) - Kentucky (1948-49-51-58-78-96-98-12), Louisville (1980 and 1986)

Michigan (3) - Michigan (1989), Michigan State (1979 and 2000)

Ohio (3) - Cincinnati (1961 and 1962), Ohio State (1960)

New York (2) - CCNY (1950), Syracuse (2003)

Pennsylvania (2) - La Salle (1954), Villanova (1985)

Wisconsin (2) - Marquette (1977), Wisconsin (1941)

Instant Success: Freshman Phenoms Who Lived Up to High Expectations

Fresh men. As in fresh blood or brand spanking new. Just like an excess of one thousand male teenagers who attempt each season to survive in the dog-eat-dog world of major-college basketball less than one year after being a top dog at the high school level. For many of the yearlings, it is a risk-filled voyage where "rookies" are thrown in the Division I ocean and asked to sink or swim. Some of the can't-miss prospects become studs such as Kentucky center Anthony Davis this year while others turn into duds. And some are somewhere inbetween such as North Carolina's Harrison Barnes, the first freshman ever named a preseason All-American by the AP.

Complicating the high-expectations transition are misguided rush-to-judgment comments from experts such as Dick Vitale who hype recruits beyond reason during their senior season in high school. According to the effervescent ESPN analyst, Delray Brooks (Indiana/Providence) was going to be the next Oscar Robertson, Tito Horford (Louisiana State/Miami, FL) was going to be the next Hakeem Olajuwon, Jeff Lebo (North Carolina) was going to be the next Jerry West, ad nauseam. Brooks, Horford and Lebo went on to become fine college players, but the only thing they had in common with the Big O, the Dream and Mr. Clutch was they played in the same half century.

Freshmen played varsity college basketball in wartime years during the 1940s and early '50s because of manpower shortages, and at earlier times when eligibility requirements were lax. But for the most part prior to the 1972-73 campaign, colleges fielded freshman teams requiring extra scholarships and operating expenses. Consequently, the introduction of freshman eligibility trimmed costs and, of course, gave eager coaches instant access to high school phenoms who are immediately placed under the glare of the spotlight to help keep elite programs on a pedestal or possibly give struggling teams a chance to climb the ladder of success.

Former Marquette coach Al McGuire coined the phrase: "The best thing about freshmen is that they become sophomores." But a striking number of sudden impact freshmen combined sufficient physical maturity with quick adjustments to the speed and complexity of the college game. Celebrating the first 40 years of freshman eligibility, following is a ranking of the top 40 freshman seasons nationally including games improved by their school from the previous season:

Rank Freshman Pos. College Season Games Improved
1. Bernard King F Tennessee 1974-75 +1 to 18-8 record
2. Devin Durant F Texas 2006-07 -4 to 25-10
3. Robert Parish C Centenary 1972-73 +5 to 19-8
4. Chris Jackson G Louisiana State 1988-89 +3 to 20-12
5. Carmelo Anthony F Syracuse 2002-03 +7 1/2 to 30-5
6. Wayman Tisdale C Oklahoma 1982-83 +2 to 24-9
7. Mark Aguirre F DePaul 1978-79 -2 to 26-6
8. Keith Lee C Memphis State 1981-82 +10 to 24-5
9. Magic Johnson G Michigan State 1977-78 +11 1/2 to 25-5
10. Anthony Davis C Kentucky 2011-12 +8 to 38-2
11. Adrian Dantley F Notre Dame 1973-74 +8 1/2 to 26-3
12. Shareef Abdur-Rahim F California 1995-96 +3 1/2 to 17-11
13. Mark Macon G Temple 1987-88 -1 to 32-2
14. Mark Price G Georgia Tech 1982-83 +2 to 13-15
15. Ralph Sampson C Virginia 1979-80 +2 1/2 to 24-10
16. Kenny Anderson G Georgia Tech 1989-90 +6 1/2 to 28-7
17. Greg Oden C Ohio State 2006-07 +5 1/2 to 35-4
18. Michael Beasley F-C Kansas State 2007-08 -1 to 21-12
19. Joe Smith C Maryland 1993-94 +5 to 18-12
20. Quentin Richardson F DePaul 1998-99 +10 1/2 to 18-13
21. John Wall G Kentucky 2009-10 +12 to 35-3
22. Derrick Rose G Memphis 2007-08 +3 1/2 to 38-2
23. Kevin Love C UCLA 2007-08 +3 1/2 to 35-4
24. Lionel Simmons F La Salle 1986-87 +3 1/2 to 20-13
25. Jared Sullinger F Ohio State 2010-11 +5 to 34-3
26. Patrick Ewing C Georgetown 1981-82 +7 1/2 to 30-7
27. Karl Malone F Louisiana Tech 1982-83 +7 1/2 to 19-9
28. Chris Webber F Michigan 1991-92 +8 1/2 to 25-9
29. Fly Williams G Austin Peay 1972-73 +9 1/2 to 22-7
30. Jeff Ruland C Iona 1977-78 +1 to 17-10
31. Jacky Dorsey F Georgia 1974-75 +2 1/2 to 8-17
32. Michael Brooks F La Salle 1976-77 +4 1/2 to 17-12
33. Gary Trent F Ohio University 1992-93 +3 1/2 to 14-13
34. Ron Lee G Oregon 1972-73 +10 to 16-10
35. Johnny Dawkins G Duke 1982-83 +1/2 to 11-17
36. Allen Iverson G Georgetown 1994-95 +2 to 21-10
37. Phil Ford G North Carolina 1974-75 +1 1/2 to 23-8
38. Larry Hughes G Saint Louis 1997-98 +9 to 22-11
39. Gene Banks F Duke 1977-78 +9 1/2 to 27-7
40. Alvan Adams C Oklahoma 1972-73 +4 to 18-8

Missing the Boat: How Good Could Louisville Have Been in 1980?

The only time an All-American attending an out-of-state university opposed a school from his hometown in an NCAA Tournament final was in 1963, when Cincinnati center George Wilson collected 10 points and 13 rebounds in a 60-58 overtime loss against Loyola of Chicago.

In 1980, Louisville natives Jeff Lamp of Virginia and Rudy Macklin of Louisiana State were All-Americans when their hometown university won the NCAA Tournament. The Cardinals clobbered Louisiana State, 86-66, in the Midwest Regional final despite Macklin's team-high eight rebounds. Louisville's backcourt of Darrell Griffith and Jerry Eaves were local products.

Shane Battier missed out on the 2000 NCAA championship by failing to stay in his home state and attend Michigan State but he was Final Four MOP the next season when Duke captured the crown. Following are players who attended high school in a state that supplied the NCAA Tournament champion the same year the player was a Division I All-American for an out-of-state university:

Year NCAA Champion All-American College Hometown
2010 Duke John Wall Kentucky Raleigh, NC
2004 Connecticut Ryan Gomes Providence Waterbury, CT
2000 Michigan State Shane Battier Duke Birmingham, MI
1995 UCLA Jacque Vaughn Kansas Pasadena, CA
1989 Michigan Derrick Coleman Syracuse Detroit, MI
1982 North Carolina Eric "Sleepy" Floyd Georgetown Gastonia, NC
1982 North Carolina Dominique Wilkins Georgia Washington, NC
1980 Louisville Jeff Lamp Virginia Louisville, KY
1980 Louisville Rudy Macklin Louisiana State Louisville, KY
1974 North Carolina State John Lucas Jr. Maryland Durham, NC
1971 UCLA Stan Love Oregon Inglewood, CA
1965 UCLA John Fairchild Brigham Young Encinitas, CA
1964 UCLA Paul Silas Creighton Oakland, CA
1963 Loyola (IL) George Wilson Cincinnati Chicago, IL
1958 Kentucky Hank Stein Xavier Louisville, KY
1942 Stanford John Mandic Oregon State Los Angeles, CA
1940 Indiana Chet Aubuchon Michigan State Gary, IN
1940 Indiana Ralph Vaughn Southern California Frankfort, IN

Higher Education: Turner Among School Presidents Who Played College Hoops

The stereotypical view depicting educators as know-nothings when it comes to athletics isn't always accurate. Lost amid the hoop hubbub of Larry Brown's hubris bringing Dallas a new soap opera is the fact that R. Gerald Turner, Southern Methodist's President since 1995, is a former college basketball player.

Time will tell if Turner is remembered more for luring Brown to campus, giving A.D. Steve Orsini a pink slip or his efforts to attract the George W. Bush Presidential Center. Turner, co-chair of the Knight Commission, was Chancellor at Mississippi when he hired Rob Evans as Ole Miss' first black head basketball coach in 1992 after being his junior college teammate at Lubbock (TX) Christian.

After junior college, Turner attended Abilene Christian (TX) but didn't play there because of a knee injury (class of '68). He is in a group that could be called "students of the game." Following is an alphabetical list of college presidents/chancellors who made more of an impact than Turner as college basketball players for a four-year school:

BOB BECKEL, Air Force
Achieved the rank of lieutenant general before retiring to be president of New Mexico Military Institute. USAF's career leader in scoring average with a 22.8-point mark led the Falcons in scoring in each of his three seasons from 1956-57 through 1958-59.

PETE BLACKMAN, UCLA
Vice Chancellor of his alma mater. For more than a decade, he oversaw campuswide administration, including facilities management, environmental health and safety, financial services, housing and hospitality services, transportation services, administrative information systems and campus police. Starting forward and team leader in field-goal shooting (50.2%) for 1962 NCAA Tournament team when the John Wooden-coached Bruins finished fourth. The 6-5 Blackman averaged 7.5 points per game in four playoff outings to finish the campaign with averages of 11.5 ppg and 5.6 rpg.

JIM BOND, Pasadena (CA)
Received a doctorate in the ministry and served as a minister and president of his San Diego-based alma mater, now known as Point Loma Nazarene College. Later became the top executive for the Nazarene Church worldwide. Texas native was a two-time NAIA All-American (class of '54) who averaged 19.3 ppg.

DR. CALVIN W. BURNETT, St. Louis
President of Coppin State in Baltimore from 1970 to 2003 was listed in Who's Who in America. Three-year letterman averaged 5.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per game with the Billikens (1956-57 through 1958-59). The 6-5, 190-pound forward led the team in rebounding with 14.9 per game as a sophomore (19th in the nation in rebound percentage) and retrieved a team-high 18 missed shots in two NCAA Tournament games. Excerpt from sketch in school guide: "Strong, fast and a fine competitor, Cal favors a leaping one-hander from medium range. He is `sure death' on follows."

VERNON CHEADLE, Miami (Ohio)
Chancellor of UC Santa Barbara from 1962 to 1977. Three-year basketball letterman in the early 1930s also participated in track and football.

WILLIAM "RED" DEMAREST, Rutgers
Former president of his alma mater. Earned basketball letters from 1931-32 through 1933-34.

DR. JACK DOLAND, McNeese State
President of his alma mater went on to become a state senator. Played for McNeese State when it was a junior college in the late 1940s.

DR. JAMES FRANK, Lincoln (MO) President of his alma mater for 10 years before serving as SWAC commissioner from 1983 to 1998. Also played baseball and competed in track for Lincoln. Named the 89th most influential student-athlete in 2006 when the NCAA celebrated its centennial anniversary.

DR. FREDERICK L. HOVDE, Minnesota
President of Purdue University (1946-70). Fourth-leading scorer for Gophers in Big Ten basketball competition in 1928-29. Described by Spalding's Official Basketball Guide as "a small, hard driving floor man."

JOSEPH JOHNSON, Grambling
President of his alma mater from 1978 until 1991 and served in a similar capacity at Talledaga College (AL) from 1991 to 1998. In the mid-1950s, he was a teammate of Bob Hopkins, the nation's leading scorer.

REV. EDWARD A. MALLOY, Notre Dame
As Notre Dame's 16th president, he led the university from 1987 to 2005. The 6-4, 190-pound guard-forward, nicknamed "Monk," scored two points in three games as a sophomore in 1960-61, 19 in 11 games as a junior in 1961-62 and six in seven games as a senior in 1962-63. He was a high school teammate of John Thompson Jr., a star center for Providence who played briefly in the NBA before becoming coach at Georgetown, and Tom Hoover, who played for Villanova and became an NBA first-round draft choice.

JAMES E. MARTIN, Auburn
The 14th president of Auburn (from 1984 through 1992) was a scholarship basketball player at the same school. The teammate of Vince Dooley started as a 6-6 sophomore center in 1951-52, when Martin was runner-up in scoring (9.1 points per game) and led in rebounding (8 rpg). He averaged 7.1 points and 6.8 rebounds in his three-year varsity career.

DR. HUNTER R. RAWLINGS III, Haverford (PA)
President of the University of Iowa from 1987 until 1995 before serving in a similar capacity with Cornell from 1995 until 2003. The 6-7 center was a four-year starter in college. As a senior in 1965-66, he averaged 16.2 points and 16.4 rebounds per game and was named MVP in the southern College Division of the Middle Atlantic Conference after leading his team to a 13-3 league record.

JOHN REYNDERS, Allegheny (MA)
President of Morningside College (IA). Three-year letterman (class of '75) became the winningest coach in his alma mater's history.

DR. JAMES M. ROSSER, Southern Illinois
President of Cal State Los Angeles since 1979. Averaged 4.9 ppg in 1959-60 before appearing in four games for the Salukis the next season.

DR. KENNETH A. SHAW, Illinois State
Chancellor of Syracuse University for 13 years from 1991 to 2004 represented the Big East Conference on the NCAA Presidents Commission. He was the first-ever chair for the NCAA Board of Directors. Known as "Buzz" in college, he was a 6-2, 185-pound guard who averaged 12.9 ppg in his varsity career. He led the Redbirds in scoring as a junior with a 15-point average. Shaw set school records (subsequently broken) for most games played (108) and highest career free-throw percentage (.831).

LAWSON SWEARINGEN, Northeast Louisiana
Louisiana District 34 state senator from 1979 until 1991 until he was elected his alma mater's fourth president. Lettered four years from 1962-63 through 1965-66 and played on one conference title team. He averaged 1.7 ppg and 2.7 rpg while shooting 37% from the floor and 49% from the free-throw line

DR. C. PAT TAYLOR, Tennessee-Martin
Southwest Baptist (MO) president since the fall of 1996. The 5-11 guard's best varsity season under coach Floyd Burdette was as a junior in 1966-67 when he averaged 3.4 ppg. He averaged 2.3 ppg during his three-year varsity career after averaging 16.3 ppg for UTM's freshman squad. Sketch in school press guide: "Makes up for his lack of size with speed and hustle. Very capable defensive man with quickness and agility. Offensively, he is a fast thinker and is a valuable playmaker."

CHRIS THOMFORDE, Princeton
Lutheran minister was chaplain at Susquehanna University before serving as President of Bethany (KS), St. Olaf (MN) and Moravian (PA). Two-time All-Ivy League first-team selection averaged 13 ppg and 8.9 rpg from 1966-67 through 1968-69. "The quality of this fellow is just mind-boggling," former Princeton coach Pete Carril said. "He's probably the finest human being I've ever met in my life. No one could ever come close. He gave a sermon at Princeton on why one had to believe in God and it was the best presentation. He must be of God's work." The 6-9, 210-pounder was an All-East Regional selection in the 1967 NCAA Tournament after collecting game highs of 22 points, 15 rebounds and six assists in a 78-58 victory over St. John's in the East Regional third-place game. He grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds when the Tigers were eliminated by St. John's, 72-63, in the first round of the 1969 East Regional.

REV. MAURICE E. VAN ACKEREN, Creighton
Former chancellor of Rockhurst College in Kansas City. First-team All-Missouri Valley Conference selection as a sophomore (second-leading scorer in league) and junior (leading scorer) and second-team choice as a senior (third-leading scorer). Creighton tied for the MVC title his first two years and won the conference crown with an 8-0 record and finished with 17-4 overall mark his senior year in 1932 when he captained the team.

Kudos to Jucos: MTSU's Dendy Joins J.C. Recruits Who Became League MVP

It wasn't long ago when only a splinter group of maverick coaches were sufficiently bold to liberally dot their rosters with junior college players stereotyped as discipline problems, academic risks or simply unsuitable to go directly from high school to major college programs. "Jucoland" was labeled by misguided observers as little more than basketball rehabilitation where free-lance players enjoyed free rein to make Great Plains arenas their own personal H-O-R-S-E stables

But a glance at NBA rosters over the years and the backgrounds of many of the nation's prominent Division I coaches suggests there probably never should have been a stigma attached to the J.C. ranks. Observers seldom hear college or NBA commentators credit a J.C. beginning, but approximately 40 NBA players annually played for a two-year school at some point in their college careers

Forwards Jae Crowder (Marquette/Big East) and LaRon Dendy (Middle Tennessee State/Sun Belt) became the latest junior college recruits to join the following alphabetical list of more than 80 players who became MVP/Player of the Year in an NCAA Division I conference:

Player of Year Pos. School Conference Season(s) Junior College(s)
Richie Adams C UNLV PCAA 1983-84 & 1984-85 Massachusetts Bay
Tony Allen G Oklahoma State Big 12 2003-04 Butler County (KS) & Wabash Valley (IL)
Delvon Anderson F Montana Big Sky 1991-92 San Francisco
Harold Arceneaux F Weber State Big Sky 1998-99 & 1999-00 Eastern Utah & Midland (TX)
Mike Bell F Florida Atlantic Atlantic Sun 2004-05 Palm Beach (FL)
Walter Berry F-C St. John's Big East 1985-86 San Jacinto (TX)
Terry Boyd G Western Carolina Southern 1991-92 Southern Union State (AL)
Odell Bradley F IUPUI Mid-Continent 2003-04 Aquinas (TN)
Tim Brooks G UT-Chattanooga Southern 1992-93 Sullivan (KY)
Antonio Burks G Memphis Conference USA 2003-04 Hiwassee (TN)
David Burns G St. Louis Metro 1980-81 Navarro (TX)
Lawrence Butler G Idaho State Big Sky 1978-79 Western Texas
Gilberto Clavell F Sam Houston State Southland 2010-11 Collin County (TX)
Donald Cole F Sam Houston State Southland 2002-03 Navarro (TX)
Tank Collins F New Orleans American South 1990-91 Southern Idaho & Salt Lake (UT)
Lester Conner G Oregon State Pacific-10 1981-82 Los Medanos (CA) & Chabot (CA)
Jae Crowder F Marquette Big East 2011-12 South Georgia Tech & Howard County (TX)
Greg Davis G Troy State Atlantic Sun 2003-04 Bossier Parish (LA)
Miah Davis G Pacific Big West 2003-04 Modesto (CA)
LaRon Dendy F Middle Tennessee State Sun Belt 2011-12 Indian Hills (IA)
Ledell Eackles F New Orleans American South 1987-88 San Jacinto (TX)
Blue Edwards F East Carolina Colonial Athletic 1988-89 Louisburg (NC)
Muhammad El-Amin G Stony Brook America East 2009-10 Lansing (MI)
Al Fisher G Kent State Mid-American 2007-08 Redlands (CA)
Darrell Floyd G-F Furman Southern 1954-55 & 1955-56 Wingate (NC)
Carlos Funchess G-F Northeast Louisiana Southland 1990-91 Copiah-Lincoln (MS)
Winston Garland G Southwest Missouri State Mid-Continent 1986-87 Southeastern (IA)
Armon Gilliam F-C UNLV Big West 1986-87 Independence (KS)
Detric Golden G Troy State Trans America 1999-2000 Northwest Mississippi
Ed Gray G California Pacific-10 1996-97 Southern Idaho
Faron Hand F Nevada Big West 1996-97 Dixie (UT)
Tony Harris G-F New Orleans American South 1989-90 Johnson County (KS)
Darington Hobson G-F New Mexico Mountain West 2009-10 Eastern Utah
Lester Hudson G Tennessee-Martin Ohio Valley 2007-08 & 2008-09 Southwest Tennessee
Bobby Jackson G Minnesota Big Ten 1996-97 Western Nebraska
Avery Johnson G Southern SWAC 1987-88 New Mexico
Larry Johnson F UNLV Big West 1989-90 & 1990-91 Odessa (TX)
Vinnie Johnson G Baylor SWC 1977-78 & 1978-79 McLennan (TX)
Arnell Jones F Boise State Big Sky 1987-88 San Jose
Kevin Kearney F Montana Big Sky 1990-91 State Fair (MO)
Larry Kenon F Memphis State Missouri Valley 1972-73 Amarillo (TX)
Frankie King G Western Carolina Southern 1993-94 & 1994-95 Brunswick (GA)
Orlando Lightfoot F Idaho Big Sky 1992-93 & 1993-94 Hiwassee (TN)
Lewis Lloyd F Drake Missouri Valley 1979-80 & 1980-81 New Mexico Military Institute
Quadre Lollis F-C Montana State Big Sky 1995-96 Northland Pioneer (AZ)
Kevin Magee F UC Irvine Big West 1980-81 & 1981-82 Saddleback (CA)
Marcus Mann F-C Mississippi Valley State SWAC 1995-96 East Central (MS)
Andrew Mavis F Northern Arizona Big Sky 1997-98 Snow (UT)
De'Teri Mayes G Murray State Ohio Valley 1997-98 Wallace-Hanceville (AL)
Ed McCants G Wisconsin-Milwaukee Horizon League 2004-05 Paris (TX)
Kellen McCoy G Weber State Big Sky 2008-09 Northern Oklahoma
Cliff Meely F-C Colorado Big Eight 1970-71 Northeastern (CO)
Mate Milisa C Long Beach State Big West 1999-2000 Pensacola (FL)
Lee Nailon F-C Texas Christian Western Athletic 1997-98 Southeastern (IA) & Butler County (KS)
Ruben Nembhard G Weber State Big Sky 1994-95 Paris (TX)
Ken Owens G Idaho Big Sky 1981-82 Treasure Valley (CA)
Artsiom Parakhouski C-F Radford Big South 2008-09 & 2009-10 Southern Idaho
Sonny Parker G-F Texas A&M SWC 1974-75 Mineral Area (MO)
Ricky Pierce F Rice SWC 1981-82 Walla Walla (WA)
Chris Porter F Auburn Southeastern 1998-99 Chipola (FL)
Isaiah "J.R." Rider F UNLV Big West 1992-93 Allen County (KS) & Antelope Valley (CA)
Hector Romero F New Orleans Sun Belt 2001-02 Independence (KS)
Curt Smith G Drake Missouri Valley 1992-93 Compton (CA)
Mike Smith G-F Louisiana-Monroe Southland 1999-2000 Bossier Parish (LA)
Riley Smith C-F Idaho Big Sky 1989-90 Odessa (TX)
Willie Smith G Missouri Big Eight 1975-76 Seminole (OK)
Adarrial Smylie C-F Southern SWAC 1998-99 & 1999-00 Pearl River (MS)
Ryan Stuart F Northeast Louisiana Southland 1991-92 & 1992-93 Lon Morris (TX)
Johnny Taylor F UT-Chattanooga Southern 1996-97 Indian Hills (IA)
Thomas Terrell F-C Georgia State Atlantic Sun 2001-02 Copiah-Lincoln (MS)
Charles Thomas G Northern Arizona Big Sky 1996-97 Cuesta (CA)
Joe Thompson F Sam Houston State Southland 2004-05 Lee (TX)
Marcus Thornton G Louisiana State Southeastern 2008-09 Kilgore (TX)
Jamaal Tinsley G Iowa State Big 12 2000-01 Mount San Jacinto (CA)
George Trapp F-C Long Beach State PCAA 1969-70 & 1970-71 Pasadena City (CA)
Darrell Walker G Arkansas SWC 1982-83 Westark (AR)
David Wesley G Baylor SWC 1991-92 Temple (TX)
Gary Wilkinson F Utah State WAC 2008-09 Salt Lake (UT)
Isiah Williams G Utah Valley Great West 2010-11 Eastern Utah
Sam Williams F Iowa Big Ten 1967-68 Burlington (IA)
Tony Windless F Georgia Southern Trans America 1991-92 Cowley County (KS)
Ricky Woods F Southeastern Louisiana Southland 2005-06 Paris (TX)

On Top of the World: Jabari Won't Be Juco Jewel Like Daddy Dearest

Chicago swingman Jabari Parker, designated on SI's cover as the best high school player since LeBron James, will be the center of the recruiting universe this year. But what separates Jabari from other prep phenoms in similar situations is the presence of a father who has been there and done that. Robert "Sonny" Parker, a two-time All-SWC first-team selection with Texas A&M in the mid-1970s before becoming a first-round draft choice of the NBA's Golden State Warriors, doesn't want coaches emailing or tweeting his son.

If history means anything, employment opportunities, personal relationships and what goes on behind closed doors probably will prove decisive. We probably could maneuver through some of the confusion if it was known whether the Parker family supports Obama (Chicago background) or Romney (Mormon) for POTUS. The Parker periscope will eventually need answers to the following questions posed for all the world to see:

  • Will Jabari seek to stay home for a year or two and become a local legend by helping revive DePaul's program via powering the Blue Demons to their first Sweet 16 since 1987 or propelling Northwestern to its first NCAA playoff appearance?

  • Will his family's emphasis on their Mormon faith give BYU an edge? LDS founder Joseph Smith was killed in Illinois but a basketball Zion could emanate from there if Jabari "took his talents to Provo" (not South Beach) perhaps via announcing the decision in another contrived ESPN hour-long special. At the very least, Parker could help the Cougars cope with their frustration of an NCAA playoff-record 17 opening-round defeats. Taking them to their first Final Four might assuage his conscience if prodigy Parker can't realistically go on a two-year mission disrupting prime earning years in the NBA.

  • How close is Sonny to Washington coach Lorenzo Romar, a two-year teammate with Golden State, or did he have a more favorable firsthand impression of Larry Brown's coaching while opposing the Denver Nuggets in Parker's first three of six NBA seasons from 1976-77 through 1981-82? Romar is a coach unafraid to exhibit his religious faith and has been a guest on "Focus on the Family." For an extended period, he played and coached basketball for Athletes in Action, a Christian sports ministry.

  • Could Jabari become Brown's next Danny Manning, who tagged along with his truck driver/assistant coach father from North Carolina to Kansas? In the wildest dreams of SMU fans, they hope former Illinois recruiter Jerrance Howard has maintained an inside connection and that Jabari's father would seek a venerable NBA coach to groom his son for the NBA by playing in a state where the junior college recruit was SWC Most Valuable Player in 1974-75. That would certainly justify the Mustangs reportedly doubling the estimated $180,000 salary Howard was getting from his alma mater. How about the possibility of Parker joining forces with the vaunted in-state Harrison twins?

  • To what lengths might Illinois modify its staff under new coach John Groce by adding a well-connected individual from Chicago to jump start a renaissance and get the Champaign flowing? The law of averages is with the Illini. Oddly, Groce's stepbrother Travis Steele was an AAU coach who was hired by Indiana's Kelvin Sampson as a video coordinator. Coincidentally, Eric Gordon, the high school standout who played for Steele's AAU team, reneged on a commitment to Illinois and signed with IU, which also had an assistant at the time by the name of Jeff Meyer (coach of Gordon's father at Liberty). The Illini's pursuit of H.S. teammate Kendrick Nunn could also pay dividends if they choose to continue to play together.

  • Is Sonny impressed by coach John Calipari's "one 'n done" philosophy after luring one-year wonders from Chicago and reaching the NCAA Tournament championship game with Derrick Rose (Memphis) and Anthony Davis (Kentucky) to finish with regal 38-2 records? Calipari has a penchant for pushing the envelope. For instance, he hired Tyreke Evans' personal trainer as an "administrative assistant" at Memphis, causing the NCAA to prohibit schools from hiring "associates" of recruits for non-coaching positions.

At any rate, the best-laid plans don't always work out. In a related and sobering item showing life is fragile, Parker isn't the first "can't-miss" player from the same high school. Ben Wilson entered his senior season of high school (1984-85) generally regarded as the premier recruit in the nation because of Magic Johnson-like skills. Just a few days prior to the first game of his senior campaign, Wilson was slain by a gunshot within a block of Simeon High's campus after bumping into two gang members while walking down the street on his school lunch break.

Speculation and more questions about Parker will run rampant as the months unfold. The only thing we do know at this stage is that Jabari won't need to take the junior college route like his father, who attended Mineral Area (MO) before becoming an Aggie.

We also know the ensuing year offers another "once-in-a-lifetime" prospect in Toronto's Andrew Wiggins, the son of former Clemson/Florida State swingman Mitchell Wiggins who is contemplating reclassifying to 2013. Father Wiggins is another former juco player (Truett-McConnell, GA) who also competed six seasons in the NBA after becoming a first-round draft pick. In player rating parlance, some think Andrew Wiggins will be a "10" compared to Jabari Parker, a "9.9", in a close choice for best prospect duplicating the NBA career scoring averages of their dads - Mitchell (10 ppg) compared to Sonny (9.9 ppg).

Comfort Zone: In-House Promotions Account for Nearly 1/5 of NCAA's Coaches

Nearly one-fifth of the nation's current Division I schools didn't need to pay moving expenses because they promoted coaches from within. Numerous marquee coaches past and present positioned their sons to succeed them but Saint Francis (PA) took nepotism to a new level when the school's athletic director hired his son, Rob Krimmel, as the new coach of the Red Flash.

Krimmel is one of eight active coaches, including NCAA titlist Tom Izzo of Michigan State, who served as an aide for at least the 10 previous seasons before he was promoted to bench boss. Following is an alphabetical list of individuals at a school where he was serving as an assistant when hired as head coach:

Active Head Coach School Seasons as Assistant for Same School
Jerome Allen Pennsylvania* 2009-10 under Glen Miller
Kevin Baggett Rider 2006-07 through 2011-12 under Tommy Dempsey
John Becker Vermont 2006-07 through 2010-11 under Mike Lonergan
Dave Bike Sacred Heart* 1976-77 and 1977-78 under Don Feeley
Jim Boeheim Syracuse* 1969-70 through 1975-76 under Roy Danforth
Will Brown Albany 2001-02 under Scott Beeten
Mitch Buonaguro Siena 2005-06 through 2009-10 under Fran McCaffery
Jason Capel Appalachian State 2009-10 under Buzz Peterson
David Carter Nevada 1999-2000 through 2008-09 under Trent Johnson and Mark Fox
Gravelle Craig Bethune-Cookman 2004-05 through 2010-11 under Clifford Reed Jr.
Scott Cross Texas-Arlington* 1998-99 through 2005-06 under Eddie McCarter
Keith Dambrot Akron* 2001-02 through 2003-04 under Dan Hipsher
Jamie Dixon Pittsburgh 1999-2000 through 2002-03 under Ben Howland
Billy Donlon Wright State 2006-07 through 2009-10 under Brad Brownell
Bryce Drew Valparaiso* 2005-06 through 2010-11 under Homer Drew
Anthony Evans Norfolk State 2003-04 through 2006-07 under Dwight Freeman
Mark Few Gonzaga 1991-92 through 1998-99 under Dan Fitzgerald and Dan Monson
Tyler Geving Portland State 2005-06 through 2008-09 under Ken Bone
Max Good Loyola Marymount half of 2008-09 under Bill Bayno
Ray Harper Western Kentucky 2008-09 to 2011-12 under Ken McDonald
Steve Hawkins Western Michigan 2000-01 through 2002-03 under Bobby McCullum
Willie Hayes Alabama A&M* 1995-96 through 2010-11 under Vann Pettaway
B.J. Hill Northern Colorado 2006-07 through 2009-10 under Tad Boyle
Jason Hooten Sam Houston State 2004-05 through 2009-10 under Bob Marlin
Todd Howard IUPUI 1994-95 through 2010-11 under Ron Hunter
Tom Izzo Michigan State 1983-84 through 1994-95 under Jud Heathcote
Lewis Jackson Alabama State* 2000-01 through 2004-05 under Rob Spivery
Ben Jacobson Northern Iowa 2001-02 through 2005-06 under Greg McDermott
Jason James Tennessee-Martin 2002-03 through 2008-09 under Bret Campbell
Tony Jasick IU PU Fort Wayne 2005-06 through 2010-11 under Dane Fife
Edward Joyner Jr. Hampton 2007-08 and 2008-09 under Kevin Nickelberry
Rob Krimmel St. Francis (PA)* 2000-01 through 2011-12 under Bobby Jones and Don Friday
Greg Lansing Indiana State 2006-07 through 2009-10 under Royce Waltman and Kevin McKenna
Chris Mack Xavier* 2004-05 through 2008-09 under Sean Miller
Phil Martelli St. Joseph's 1985-86 through 1994-95 under Jim Boyle and John Griffin
Bashir Mason Wagner 2010-11 and 2011-12 under Dan Hurley
Randy Monroe Maryland-Baltimore County 1994-95 through 2003-04 under Earl Hawkins and Tom Sullivan
LeVelle Moton North Carolina Central* 2007-08 and 2008-09 under Henry Dickerson
Kevin Ollie Connecticut* 2010-11 and 2011-12 under Jim Calhoun
Matt Painter Purdue* 2004-05 under Gene Keady
Josh Pastner Memphis 2008-09 under John Calipari
Steve Payne Tennessee Tech 2002-03 through 2010-11 under Mike Sutton
Jack Perri Long Island 2005-06 through 2011-12 under Jim Ferry
Saul Phillips North Dakota State 2004-05 through 2006-07 under Tim Miles
Dave Pilipovich Air Force 2007-08 to 2011-12 under Jeff Reynolds
J.P. Piper Nicholls State 2002-03 and 2003-04 under Ricky Blanton
Chico Potts Mississippi Valley State 2008-09 through 2011-12 under Sean Woods
Steve Prohm Murray State 2006-07 through 2010-11 under Billy Kennedy
Brett Reed Lehigh 2002-03 through 2006-07 under Billy Taylor
Byron Rimm II Prairie View 2005-06 under Darrell Hawkins
Dave Rose Brigham Young 1997-98 through 2004-05 under Steve Cleveland
Rob Senderoff Kent State 2008-09 through 2010-11 under Geno Ford
Steve Shields UALR 2000-01 through 2002-03 under Porter Moser
John Shulman Chattanooga 2002-03 and 2003-04 under Jeff Lebo
Brad Stevens Butler 2000-01 through 2006-07 under Thad Matta and Todd Lickliter
Scott Sutton Oral Roberts 1995-96 through 1998-99 under Bill Self and Barry Hinson
Wayne Tinkle Montana* 2001-02 through 2005-06 under Don Holst, Pat Kennedy and Larry Krystkowiak
Andy Toole Robert Morris 2007-08 through 2009-10 under Mike Rice Jr.
Greg Vetrone Fairleigh Dickinson 1989-90, 1990-91 and 2008-09 under Tom Green
Chris Walker Texas Tech 2011-12 under Billy Gillispie
Brian Wardle Green Bay 2005-06 through 2009-10 under Tod Kowalczyk
Buzz Williams Marquette 2007-08 under Tom Crean
Travis Williams Tennessee State 2009-10 through 2011-12 under John Cooper
Marty Wilson Pepperdine* 2008-09 through 2010-11 under Tom Asbury
Ted Woodward Maine 1996-97 through 2003-04 under John Giannini
Mike Young Wofford 1989-90 through 2001-02 under Richard Johnson

*Alma mater.

Higher Calling: Coaches More Concerned With Their Egos Than What is Best for Fans

Shortsighted doesn't begin to describe Kentucky/Indiana and Kansas/Missouri for letting their entertaining rivalries expire. They are simply joining top six conference members DePaul/Illinois, Purdue/Notre Dame, Maryland/Georgetown, Boston College/Connecticut, UCLA/UNLV and Cincinnati/Ohio State as potentially great natural non-league matchups that their fans and players can't enjoy.

If bruised egos heal quickly, perhaps sounder minds will prevail in the near term but don't count on it. IU isn't interested in neutral court-only matchups with UK. Meanwhile, a neutral court might be the only possible venue to keep KU/Mizzou alive; perhaps with the Tigers opposing the Jayhawks in Kansas City much like Mizzou does in St. Louis against Illinois. But Mizzou can't moan and groan if the Jayhawks continue to act like a jilted lover because the self-centered Tigers fail to oppose competent in-state foes such as Missouri State and Saint Louis.

UK's inane quibbling with IU leaves one with the impression that the Wildcats will eventually threaten to leave the SEC unless opposing members play their league home games against them on neutral courts rather than their on-campus arenas (perhaps Alabama and Auburn in Birmingham, Arkansas in Little Rock, Georgia in Atlanta, Mississippi State and Ole Miss in Jackson, Florida in Orlando, Tennessee and Vanderbilt in Memphis, new member Mizzou in St. Louis, etc.).

By almost any measure, KU has a superior program to Mizzou. But Jayhawks coach Bill Self should have reined in his rhetoric as the divorce dialogue intensified or at least take a crash course in college basketball history. When comparing the significance of the Kentucky/Louisville rivalry to the pending termination of KU's home-and-home conference conflicts with the Tigers, Self said: "Well, they've always played every year (out of league). That's all they know." Well, Self needs to "always know" that UK and Louisville went 61 years from 1923 through 1983 without a regular-season matchup before they came to their senses and saw the light.

Speaking of light, UK, IU, KU and Mizzou simply have to shed one lightweight apiece to keep a good thing going for the sport in general and for their fans specifically. By toning down picking on patsies, there is plenty of room on their respective non-league schedules to keep playing each other. For instance, UK feasted on Chattanooga, Loyola (Md.), Marist, Radford, Samford and UALR this season while IU shamelessly dined on Gardner-Webb, Howard University, Maryland-Baltimore County, North Carolina Central, Savannah State, Stetson and Stony Brook. KU had colossal contests with Towson, Florida Atlantic, Howard and North Dakota while Mizzou met mighty Mercer, Niagara, Binghamton, Northwestern State, Navy, Kennesaw State and William & Mary.

UK/IU might have been the nation's premier regular-season game last year. If the century-old KU/Mizzou spectacle remains intact, it could immediately surpass Kentucky/Louisville and go atop the following list of the nation's best 25 nonconference rivalries if only because of longevity:

1. Kentucky/Louisville
2. Illinois/Missouri
3. Cincinnati/Xavier
4. Indiana/Kentucky
5. Indiana/Notre Dame
6. Brigham Young/Utah
7. Iowa/Iowa State
8. Memphis/Tennessee
9. St. Joseph's/Villanova
10. Georgia/Georgia Tech
11. Florida/Florida State
12. Clemson/South Carolina
13. Marquette/Wisconsin
14. New Mexico/New Mexico State
15. Utah/Utah State
16. Temple/Villanova
17. La Salle/Villanova
18. Florida/Miami (FL)
19. Iowa/Northern Iowa
20. Colorado/Colorado State
21. Drake/Iowa
22. Penn/Villanova
23. Providence/Rhode Island
24. Creighton/Nebraska
25. Idaho/Idaho State

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