Fightin’ Gators List of Coaching Candidates

There are some might big shoes to fill in Gainesville. With the most wins in Florida history and the second most in SEC history, Billy Donovan leaves behind a legacy that will be as tough as ever to match. Jeremy Foley has his work cut out for him and here are ten names we think we need to watch in the coaching search.

Five Most Likely…

Bryce Drew (Valparaiso; 94-42)

Son of coaching legend Homer Drew and brother of Scott at Baylor, Bryce has led Valpo to the post season in each of his four years including two trips to the NCAA Tournament where he won a game in each. Just 40 years old, he is considered a sharp recruiter and looks to be in the mold of a Jeremy Foley hire.

Anthony Grant (Florida Asst.)

Grant is the former assistant that has just been rehired after being let go with a 117-85 record at Alabama. Before Bama he was able to guide VCU to two NCAA appearances in his three years. A tough job at Alabama, Grant is still a company favorite at Florida and despite the shortcomings at the SEC school, he should still be viewed as a viable possibility.

Chris Mack (Xavier; 134-71)

From both the Skip Prosser and Sean Miller coaching tree, Mack and his Xavier Musketeers have been to the NCAA Tournament in five of his six years on campus including three trips to the Sweet-16. He’s just 44 years old and certainly a Jeremy Foley type of hire.

Archie Miller (Dayton; 90-41)

He’s 37, a great recruiter, and has resources with family in the business that should make Miller the highest priority on the board. He has an Elite-8 and a Sweet-16 trip in the last two of his four years at Dayton. He has been mentored by his brother Sean Miller who is the very successful coach at Arizona. This seems like a ‘can’t miss’ hire.

Richard Pitino (Minnesota; 43-28)

The Former assistant under Donovan, He’s got the pedigree being the son of legendary Louisville coach Rick Pitino who he has also worked for. Taking over a Minnesota job that is a tough one, Pitino directed them to the NIT Championship in year one, but fell back this past year. Still, with his name in recruiting and the system equivalent here, it could be a natural fit.

Four More to Watch…

Johnny Dawkins (Stanford; 141-100)

The former Duke point guard has been given a tough job to handle at Stanford and yet has done a nice job with the limited resources he has. The Cardinal has played in the post season five of the seven years he has been the coach with a single trip to the NCAA Tournament and the Sweet-16 two years ago. Given an easier place to recruit and better facilities, Dawkins could prove to be a big time recruiter and a good pull to Florida.

Scott Drew (Baylor; 227-159)

He is the brother of Bryce and doing things at Baylor that have never been done. In his 12 years with the Bears he has five NCAA appearances including two trips to the Elite-8 and one to the Sweet-16. He recruits at an elite level, pulling in some of the biggest names in high school basketball.

Ben Jacobson (Northern Iowa; 197-105)

In his nine years at Northern Iowa, Jacobson has guided them to three NCAA tournament appearances including twice to the Sweet-16 with a trip their thus year. He’s young, at 44, and the type of coach that Jeremy Foley targets at a time like this.

Larry Krystowiak (Utah; 68-63)

Krystkowiak had a tough task at Utah. In year one of his tenure his team went just 6-25. By year four (2014-2015) his Utes finished 26-9 and made it to the Sweet 16. His previous job was at Montana where the Grizzlies went 42-20 in his two years and made it to the NCAA tournament twice including a trip to the Sweet-16 in 2005-06.

One On The Wish List…

Mark Few (Gonzaga; 438-103)

The guy with the best resume on this list and maybe the most likely not to jump ship from a good thing. Few followed Dan Monson at Gonzaga after Monson was able to move Gonzaga to the national spotlight. He has helped maintain the program at an elite level. The Bulldogs have made the NCAA tournament in each of his 16 years including four trips to the Sweet-16 and and this past year with a trip to the Elite-8.


Fightin Gators Top Stories