Coaching's best dynamic duos
I was having breakfast recently at First Watch in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., when a fan came up to me and started talking about the college football bowl games.
He told me how he was impressed with a certain coach, and that triggered an idea: Which schools have the best tandem of football and basketball coaches?
I started with a couple of candidates, then put down a few more on a napkin.
Suddenly the list ballooned to the point that I came up with my dazzling dozen duos, plus some honorable mention choices.
This is based on recent results for both football and basketball. Let me know what you think -- tweet to me at @dickiev.
Here are my dazzling duos (in no particular order):
Urban Meyer and Thad Matta, Ohio State: Meyer came close to leading the Buckeyes to back-to-back unbeaten seasons before losing to Michigan State in the Big Ten title game. Matta has been in one championship game and has a legitimate contender this season.
David Cutcliffe and Mike Krzyzewski, Duke: It is not just a basketball school anymore. Cutcliffe had the Blue Devils in the ACC title game. Coach K is a Hall of Famer; enough said.
Mark Dantonio and Tom Izzo, Michigan State: I love the passion of both men. Dantonio and his Spartans just won the Rose Bowl over Stanford. Izzo has a contender on the hardwood.
Charley Strong and Rick Pitino, Louisville: Will Strong move on to Texas? There have been some interesting rumors. Pitino won the national title last year and made it into the Hall of Fame.
Rich Rodriguez and Sean Miller, Arizona: Thought about this combo right away because Miller's team is No. 1 1 in America right now, while Rich Rod got a big bowl win over Boston College.
Mark Helfrich and Dana Altman, Oregon: Helfrich took over from Chip Kelly and didn't miss a beat in his first season. The Ducks blew out Texas at the Alamo Bowl. Altman got his squad to last season's Sweet 16 and has them ranked highly this season.
Gary Andersen and Bo Ryan, Wisconsin: Andersen led the Badgers to a 9-4 record in his first season in Madison. Ryan always gets the most out of his players and has his squad in the top five.
Kirk Ferentz and Fran McCaffery, Iowa: Ferentz had the Hawkeyes in another bowl game while McCaffery is building something special.
Larry Fedora and Roy Williams, North Carolina: Fedora got a bowl victory while Williams has a Hall of Fame ring.
Art Briles and Scott Drew, Baylor: Despite a Fiesta Bowl loss to Central Florida, Briles is a hot name thanks to his explosive offense. Look at what Drew has done turning around a program that was in trouble.
Jimbo Fisher and Leonard Hamilton, Florida State: Fisher is playing for a national championship while Hamilton has brought consistent success to Tallahassee.
Brady Hoke and John Beilein, Michigan: Hoke has built a winner while Beilein played for the national title last year.
David Shaw and Johnny Dawkins, Stanford: Shaw has become one of the elite coaches in college football. Dawkins has put up respectable numbers.
Bill Snyder and Bruce Weber, Kansas State: Snyder has withstood the test of time as his Wildcats beat Michigan in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, and Weber has his team playing well.
Steve Spurrier and Frank Martin, South Carolina: The Old Ball Coach is something special, and I love Martin's passion; be patient, Gamecocks fans, he will build a winner.
Bob Stoops and Lon Kruger, Oklahoma: These guys are flat-out winners. Kruger is the only coach to take five different schools to the NCAA tournament.
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