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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Sunday / October 21.
  • Villanova’s Jay Wright joins select group of coaches with second NCAA championship

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    By ADAM ZAGORIA

    SAN ANTONIO — The man they call GQ Jay continues to make history.

    Villanova’s Jay Wright joined a select group of college coaches with two NCAA championships by virtue of his team’s 79-62 win over Michigan here Monday night at the Alamodome.

    “I really can’t get my mind around it,” Wright told Jim Nantz of CBS of the win. “We never dreamt of this.”

    Wright, 56, becomes the 15th Division 1 coach with at least two NCAA titles, and only the third active one.

    Duke’s Mike Krzyzewki (5) and North Carolina’s Roy Williams (3) are the only other active coaches with more than one.

    Wright, 56, joins a group of two-time champions that includes Denny Crum (Louisville), Dean Smith (North Carolina), Billy Donovan (Florida), and Rick Pitino (Kentucky, Louisville).

    Wright now has more rings than four active Naismith Hall of Fame coaches: Jim Boeheim (Syracuse), John Calipari (Kentucky), Tom Izzo (Michigan State) and Bill Self (Kansas).

    That should virtually guarantee that he will be enshrined one day soon.

    Here is the list of coaches with two or more NCAA titles:

    John Wooden (UCLA) – 10

    Mike Krzyzewski (Duke) – 5

    Adolph Rupp (Kentucky) – 4

    Roy Williams (North Carolina) – 3

    Bob Knight (Indiana) – 3

    Jim Calhoun (UConn) – 3

    Jay Wright (Villanova) – 2

    Denny Crum (Louisville) – 2

    Dean Smith (North Carolina) – 2

    Billy Donovan (Florida) – 2

    Rick Pitino (Kentucky, Louisville) – 2

    Branch McCracken (Indiana) – 2

    Henry Iba (Oklahoma State) – 2

    Phil Woolpert (San Francisco) – 2

    Ed Jucker (Cincinnati) – 2

     

    After reaching the Final Four in 2009, Wright was offered the Kentucky job, but turned it down. He also spoke with the Philadelphia 76ers, but then asked to have his name taken out of consideration, per ESPN.

    The last time Villanova won the title in 2016, Wright was immediately linked to several NBA jobs, but then said he loved being at Villanova.

    He reiterated those comments again Monday.

    “I just have the best job in the country, my hometown, my wife’s alma mater, my favorite team growing up,” he said. “And I got a great president, great AD, Father Peter and Mark Jackson. I just love going to work every day. Our guys graduate. You see these kids are great to coach. As a coach, there’s just nothing better.”

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.