With there being many great talented coaches in collegiate basketball I wanted to state my opinion on what coaches I believe are the best in history. In first place for the best NCAA men’s college basketball coach is John Wooden. John Wooden, known as the “Wizard of Westwood,” was one of the most renowned and admired coaches in men’s basketball.
He was recognized for his dominant championship run at UCLA and his methodology for player mentoring, particularly through the use of motivational quotes. In 12 years, Wooden took the Bruins to an incredible 10 NCAA college basketball Championships while crushing the competition in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
A renowned athlete in his own right, Wooden led his high school team to a national championship, was a three-time All-American at Purdue, and played professionally for a couple of years in the NBL before turning to coach. John is a 5-time AP college coach of the year, a Seven-time Henry Iba Award winner, along with awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In my opinion he was the best coach in history.
Dukes Coach K
Coming in 2nd is Mike Krzyzewski. Nationwide, Mike Krzyzewski is known as “Coach K.” Krzyzewski began as the Duke Blue Devils’ head coach in 1980 and retired after the 2021–22 season. Duke has won 12 ACC regular-season titles, 15 ACC tournament titles, and five NCAA championships during Mike’s tenure as head coach. Krzyzewski won three Olympic gold medals while leading the USA men’s national team, including one in 1992 with the Dream Team.
Coach K began his coaching career at Army, where he played college basketball for Bob Knight, and spent five years there before moving on to Duke. Krzyzewski has amassed well over 1,000 victories, making him by far one of the most successful coaches in the history of men’s collegiate basketball. Coach K has won the Naismith College Coach of the Year 3 times, and 5 times ACC coach of the year.
UNC’s Roy Williams
Covering the 3rd spot is Roy Williams. One of the most productive college basketball coaches in history is Roy Williams. Throughout his 33-year head coaching career, he won 903 games for Kansas and North Carolina combined. Williams played basketball for Buddy Baldwin’s high school basketball team and Dean Smith’s UNC team as a freshman.
He transitioned to being a student assistant coach before returning to UNC as an assistant coach, where he assisted the team in winning an NCAA championship. Williams took over as head coach of the underperforming Kansas Jayhawks in 1988 and, despite not winning a title, turned around the program to make the program the most successful of the 1990s. Following that, he relocated to North Carolina, where he led the Tar Heels to win three NCAA championships.
Roy is a Two-Time AP Coach of the Year, Two-Time Henry Iba Award Winner, Three-Time NCAA champion, Three-Time Big 12 Tournament winner, and Three-Time ACC Tournament winner. Statistically, these coaches are the best coaches in history and in my opinion, my list stands firm.