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At the top of the food chain in college sports, football and men’s basketball reign supreme. Raking in money, millionaire coaches have to deliver on the field or court of play.
In either sport, though, program-building is no easy task. Coaches need to recruit and develop at elite levels and sustain that talent, among other areas, for a team’s longevity at the top.
The fall and winter showed that some of the best coaches reside at the same universities. So with that in mind, which schools have the best of both worlds?
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Factoring in past and recent success with the latest season and obstacles in between, 247Sports sorted through the cream of the crop and ranked the top 10 football and basketball coaching duos across college sports for 2021-22. Scroll through the following slides to see how the order shook out, starting with 10th and ending at first.
Purdue finished 9-4 this football season and earned a win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl to finish the season with a 9-4 record. In five years as head coach of the Boilermakers, Brohm owns a 28-29 record but 2021 was his most successful season to date. As for the basketball team, Painter has been with Purdue since 2005 and owns a 379-190 record as the head coach. Painter has 12 NCAA Tournament appearances and is a three-time Big Ten regular-season champion. Purdue is 24-6 this season and has Final Four aspirations with an experienced and deep roster.
Although 2021 was considered a down year for Swinney and Clemson football, the team still finished 10-3 on the year with a Cheez-It Bowl victory over Iowa State. Swinney has been dominant as Clemson’s head coach, owning a 150-36 record in 14 seasons at the helm. He also has four college football playoff appearances, winning twice. Brownell has appeared with Clemson three times in the NCAA Tournament and owns a 215-165 record as head basketball coach.
Stoops has been Kentucky’s head football coach for the last nine seasons and turned the program around in 2021, going 10-3 on the season with a Citrus Bowl win over Iowa. In nine seasons, Stoops is 59-53 as the Wildcats’ head coach. Kentucky basketball has been dominant over the years and makes this list because of John Calipari. In 21 seasons and counting with the Wildcats, Calipari owns a 363-99 record including six SEC regular-season titles. Kentucky is once again a threat this season to compete for a title in the NCAA Tournament.
Arkansas football surprised everyone in 2021, finishing with a 9-4 record in head coach Sam Pittman’s second season. They also secured an Outback Bowl win over Penn State during the 2021 season. The Razorbacks basketball team has been recharged with head coach Eric Musselman. The third-year head coach owns a 69-25 record and has Arkansas ready to compete in a second straight NCAA Tournament. This season, the Razorbacks are currently 24-6 and have been ranked as high as No. 10 on the season.
Ferentz has been at Iowa for 23 seasons now and turned in a 10-4 record in 2021. He owns a 178-110 career record with the Hawkeyes, including a 9-9 record in bowl games. McCaffery has Iowa clicking on cylinders this basketball season, currently with a 22-8 record. He owns a 238-160 career record with the Hawkeyes and has appeared in five NCAA Tournaments as head coach of Iowa.
Chryst just wrapped up his seventh season with the Badgers in 2021. In 88 career games, he owns a 65-23 record and is a very impressive 6-1 in bowl games. Wisconsin defeated Arizona State in this year’s Las Vegas Bowl. As for Wisconsin basketball, the Badgers are won the 2021-22 Big Ten regular-season title with a 24-5 record. Gard is also in his seventh season with Wisconsin basketball and owns a 143-75 record with five NCAA Tournament appearances.
Day has been one of college football’s most successful coaches since taking over, owning a 34-4 record in just four seasons at the helm. He also has a 2-2 record in bowl games and a College Football Playoff appearance in 2020. Ohio State won the Rose Bowl in 2021 with a thrilling 48-45 victory over Utah. Ohio State basketball has been led by Chris Holtmann for the last five seasons. Holtmann owns a 106-53 record in the ultra-tough Big Ten Conference and has three NCAA Tournament appearances.
Aranda completely turned Baylor around in 2021, finishing the season with a 12-2 record in just his second year as head coach. The Bears also took down Ole Miss in the Sugar Bowl to cap off their improbable season. Drew has been the coach of Baylor basketball since 2003-04 and captured his first national title in 2020 by defeating Gonzaga in the NCAA Tournament. This year, Baylor is 25-5 on the season and looks every bit the part of contending for a national title once again.
In just his second year as the Spartans’ head coach, Tucker went 11-2 this season with Michigan State and earned a tough Peach Bowl win over Pittsburgh. Izzo’s tenure at Michigan State speaks for itself, with the legendary coach owning a 662-265 record as head coach. This season, the Spartans are 19-11 heading into the Big Ten conference tournament. Izzo also has eight Final Four appearances.
Saban is no doubt one of the greatest coaches of all time, owning a 183-25 record as head coach of the Crimson Tide. In the last seven years, Saban has appeared with Alabama in the college football playoff six times, winning three of them. His legacy is certainly set in stone in terms of being one of the greatest college coaches ever. His counterpart on the basketball team, Nate Oats, has been with Alabama for three seasons and has seen great success. Oats is 61-33 and is set to make his second straight NCAA Tournament as head coach of the Crimson Tide.
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