Who's the best college hoops coach? ESPN's Fran Fraschilla weighs in | Zagsblog
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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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Friday / April 12.
  • Who’s the best college hoops coach? ESPN’s Fran Fraschilla weighs in

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    ESPN college basketball analyst Fran Fraschilla had quite the career as a head basketball coach.

    He led Manhattan College to the NCAA Tournament twice, including in 1995 where his Jaspers upset Kelvin Sampson’s No. 4 Oklahoma Sooners as a 13-seed. Fraschilla also coached four NBA players at St. John’s — including a unique personality in Metta World Peace — and found success at New Mexico in the early 2000s before moving on to ESPN. Overall in his coaching career, Fraschilla made the postseason eight out of nine seasons and posted a record of 176-99.

    So, when given the opportunity to interview Fraschilla on The Hum: A KU Hoops Podcast, the question had to be asked. Who is the best head coach in college basketball right now, and who would he want leading his program?

    “Here’s how I’m going to answer this,” Fraschilla said. “If I was a young coach — and I had a year sabbatical to just learn how to be a basketball coach — I would spend a year with Kelvin Sampson… But I think Bill Self is the best all-around coach in college basketball.

    Fraschilla continued:

    “Bill in every aspect of a program, including being the face of a program, it’s hard to top. He wins in different ways. He’s won with [McDonald’s] All-American’s. He’s won with guys that nobody recruited essentially like Frank Mason. And he doesn’t want you to know how good of a coach he is, that’s the beauty of Bill.”

    Since coming to Kansas, Bill Self has posted a record of 565-132 with three Final Four appearances and two national titles (2008, 2022). The most staggering statistic, though, is the fact Self has won the Big 12 17 out of the last 20 seasons, including an NCAA-record 13-straight Big 12 titles from 2004-2017. Self currently has the same number of losses at Allen Fieldhouse than Big 12 championships.

    Fraschilla pointed out that it’s not just what Self has done on the court that sets him apart, but his personality as well.

    “He’s like your next door neighbor you borrow the lawnmower from,” Fraschilla said. “But I think Bill is THE best. In one game, all things being equal, I want Bill Self as my coach.”

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