Naismith Award 2019: 15 Finalists Named For Coach Of The Year

The Naismith Award for Coach of the Year is considered the highest honor a college basketball coach can receive during a season. Previous winners include legendary coaches such as Bob Knight, Mike Krzyzewski, Dean Smith, John Calipari, and Roy Williams.

The credentials needed to win coach of the year are difficult. Coaches need to display a winning record, dominate their conference, and possibly bring their team to a national championship.

However, this is much easier said than done.

Today, the Naismith Award announced it’s 15 nominations for the award.

A full look at the list of nominees can be seen below.


Rick Barnes

School: Tennessee

Conference:ย SEC

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The Tennessee Volunteers have been, to say the least, dominant this season. Their previous No. 1 ranking didn’t last long with a couple of tough losses, but they are still currently ranked No. 7 in the country. Barnes has led the team to a current record of 24-3 and a conference record of 12-2.


Chris Beard

School: Texas Tech

Conference:ย Big 12

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Chris Beard and the Red Raiders are currently ranked the No. 11 team in the nation. Beard has led the Red Raiders to a 22-5 overall record and a 10-4 conference record.


John Beilein

School: Michigan

Conference: Big 10

Beilein has led the Wolverines to a current ranking of No. 9 in the nation. Michigan has an overall record of 24-4 and a conference record of 13-4.


Tony Bennett

School: Virginia

Conference: ACC

Last year’s previous winner is nominated once again. Bennett has the Cavilers ranked as the No. 2 team in the nation. In addition, Virginia’s overall record is 24-2 and they have a conference record of 12-2.


Mark Few

School: Gonzaga

Conference: WCC

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Mark Few has his Bulldogs as the No. 1 ranked team in the country. They have an overall record of 27-2 and a perfect conference record of 14-0.


Tom Izzo

School: Michigan State

Conference: Big 10

Tom Izzo has his Spartan in contention once again. They are currently ranked the No. 6 team in the nation with an overall record of 23-5. They also have a conference record of 14-3 which is first in the Big 10.


Mike Krzyzewski

School: Duke

Conference: ACC

Mike Krzyzewski is quite familiar with The Naismith Award for Coach of the Year. He was previously given the award in 1998. He has his blue devils ranked as the No. 3 team in the nation with an overall record of 24-4. They also have a conference record of 12-3.


Chris Mack

School: Louisville

Conference: ACC

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Chris Macks Cardinals are currently unranked but they have an overall record of 18-10. They also have a conference record of 9-6.


Eric Musselman

School: Nevada

Conference: Mountain West

Eric Musselman has Nevada ranked as the No. 12 team in the country right now. Nevada also has a current overall record of 25-2 and a conference record of 12-2 which puts them first in the Mountain West.


Nate Oats

School: Buffalo

Conference: MAC

Nate Oats has Buffalo ranked as the No. 21 team in the nation. They also have an overall record of 25-3 and a conference record of 13-2.


Matt Painter

School: Purdue

Conference: Big 10

Matt Painter has Purdue as the No. 14 ranked team in the nation. In addition, Purdue also has a current overall record of 20-7 and a conference record of 13-3.


Kelvin Sampson

School: Houston

Conference: AAC

Kelvin Sampson has Houston ranked as the No. 8 team in the nation. They have a current overall record of 26-1 and a conference record of 13-1.


Roy Williams

School: North Carolina

Conference: ACC

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Roy Williams has won The Naismith Award for Coach of the Year once in 1996. He has led the Tar Heels to their No. 5 ranking and they also have an overall record of 23-5. Not to mention their conference record of 13-2.


Steve Wojciechowski

School: Marquette

Conference: Big East

Steve Wojciechowski has lead Marquette to the current ranking of No. 10 in the nation. They also have an overall record of 23-4 and a conference record of 12-2.


Mike Young

School: Wofford

Conference: SoCon

Mike Young has lead Wofford to the current ranking of No. 24 in the nation. Wofford also has an overall record of 24-4 and a perfect conference record of 16-0.