Shaka Smart, on the day he was introduced as the new basketball coach at the University of Texas on Friday April 3, 2015, at the Frank Erwin Center. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

BEVO BEAT Men's Basketball

How Shaka Smart the player stacks up against the rest of the NCAA tourney coaches

Posted March 15th, 2016


A few days after ESPN ranked the best college football coaches based on their college football playing days, the Worldwide Leader is at it again, this time ranking the men’s basketball coaches.

ESPN ranked all 68 coaches based on their college basketball playing days.

Where did Texas coach Shaka Smart land?


The first-year Texas coach was No. 36. Here’s what ESPN wrote:

Smart garnered recruiting interest from the Ivy League but instead attended Division III Kenyon College (Ohio), thanks in large part to his bond with then-head coach Bill Brown. Smart developed into a four-year starter (1995-99) and three-year captain for the Lords, becoming the school’s career assist leader.

So you’re wondering where Kenyon College is, right? Kenyon is in Gambier, Ohio. Where is Gambier? It’s north east of Columbus, Ohio in Knox County. Kenyon is the oldest private university in Ohio.

Where did some other notable coaches rank? Well, Baylor’s Scott Drew was No. 67, barely getting in the field. Texas A&M’s Billy Kennedy (Delgado Community College, in Louisiana, alum) has a new five-year deal, but he was No. 57 (ranking just ahead of North Carolina’s Roy Williams). Ranking one spot ahead of Smart is Texas Tech  coach Tubby Smith (High Point alum) at No. 35 and just behind Smart is another Texas-based coach, Brad Underwood (Kansas State alum who also played at Hardin-Simmons) of Stephen F. Austin.

The Big 12 was well represented on the list, with Kansas’ Bill Self (Oklahoma State alum)  was No. 19, West Virginia’s Bob Huggins (A Mountaineer alum) at No. 11 and Lon Kruger (Kansas State legend) at No. 5.

Former St. Edwards standout Rodney Terry, who is also a former Longhorn assistant coach, was No. 48 as he leads Fresno State into the dance.


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