Archie Miller starred at NC State and has also served as an assistant for the Wolfpack.
ARCHIE MILLER (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Dayton
SALARY: $1.7 Million
QUICK NOTES: Arguably the hottest mid-major coach in the country, Miller has turned Dayton into the power in the A-10. He's led the Flyers to a fourth straight NCAA Appearance, has already reached an Elite Eight, and has clinched his second A-10 title.
Factor in his experience as an assistant coach in three Power 5 conferences and his bloodlines, Miller is certainly a rising star in the coaching ranks.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Miller should certainly be on NC State's radar.
He played for the Wolfpack from 1998-2002 and as a senior he helped lead the team to the program's first NCAA appearance in 11 years. His wife, Morgan, is also an alum and she still has family in the state. Miller spent three seasons as an assistant in Raleigh, before stints at Ohio State and Arizona.
The expectation is that Miller will get the opportunity to return home. However, some believe he has his eyes set on perceived bigger jobs, such as Ohio State. Either way, there is no doubt that he is going to receive heavy consideration from the Wolfpack.
“It’s a lot like our guys playing at Dayton,” Miller told the Dayton Daily News of NC State. “The experience they have playing in front of tremendous fans, the experience they have going to school and all the great people around them who help them. I’m no different. I went to N.C State, played there, had a great experience. So many of those people have helped me along the way. As everybody else, you go into real life and as you get into real life, you go along your own path. That’s sort of where I am now.”
3/2 UPDATE: Archie Miller has Dayton in first place in the A-10 conference, as the Flyers just won the outright regular season title. He could be NC State's top target for the vacancy. The question is if he will listen to a pitch from the Wolfpack or choose to remain at Dayton until other options become available.
3/13 UPDATE: Dayton earned a No. 7 seed and will face No. 10 seed Wichita State Friday at 7:10 pm. We continue to believe Archie Miller remains in the mix for the NC State vacancy, although most believe it is a longshot he'll return to coach at his alma mater.
WILL WADE (LINK TO BIO)
VCU's Will Wade has a huge upside.
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, VCU
SALARY: $1.4 Million
BUYOUT: $1 Million
QUICK NOTES: Wade has quickly turned into a terrific young coach.
He earned his stripes as the lead assistant for Shaka Smart at VCU before taking over at Chattanooga in 2013. Wade was 40-25 in two seasons with the Mocs, including 27-7 in the Southern Conference. In the two seasons prior to Wade’s arrival, the Mocs finished a combined 24-40, including 13-23 in the SoCon.
He was named 2014 Southern Conference Coach of the Year after guiding Chattanooga to an 18-15 mark in his first season, a five-win improvement over the previous campaign. Wade steered Chattanooga to a 22-10 record in 2014-15, the school's first 20-win season since 2004-05.
He replaced Smart at VCU in 2015 and led the program to a conference title his first year and was the youngest coach in the NCAA Tournament last season. He followed that up with a 26-8, 14-4 mark this year.
CONNECTING THE DOTS -- Wade is an intriguing option. He has experience at two programs and has won at both and could be a long-term answer in Raleigh.
However, would he take the job? He's making good money now, like Smart before him, and is a Clemson alum. Could he be waiting for that job? For what it's worth, one source indicated to us that Wade is extremely high on the NC State job. Really high.
3/2 UPDATE: Will Wade remains a serious candidate for the NC State position. He has great ties to the region and would be considered a really good hire.
3/13 UPDATE: VCU earned a No. 10 seed and will face No. 7 seed Saint Mary's Thursday at 7:20 pm. There is speculation that he remains in the mix for the NC State coaching vacancy.
Kevin Keatts has won titles as a prep coach, assistant coach, and head coach.
KEVIN KEATTS (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, UNC Wilmington
QUICK NOTES: A hot name in the state of North Carolina, Keatts has quickly risen up the coaching ranks from a head coach at prep power Hargrave (where he coached former NC State star Lorenzo Brown) to head coach at UNC Wilmington.
In between he served as Rick Pitino's lead recruiter at Louisville, where he helped the Cardinals compile two straight top-10 recruiting classes en route to a pair of Big East Conference championships and NCAA Final Four appearances in 2012 and 2013. In 2012-13, the Cardinals won a school-record 35 games and captured the NCAA title.
In 2013-14, the Cardinals, the 2013 national champions, picked up where they left off, streaking to seven straight wins en route to a third consecutive appearance in the NCAA’s Sweet Sixteen.
He's been a huge success in Wilmington. In his first season, Keatts was named CAA Coach-of-the-Year after carrying a team that finished last in the CAA in 2013-14 to its sixth regular season conference championship and a final record of 18-14. He followed it up by winning the regular season and tournament titles in 2015-2016 and won both this year.
Keatts has now won five titles in three years at UNC Wilmington.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Whatever spot he might be on Debbie Yow's list, it won't get past Keatts. Everything we hear suggests he would love the challenge awaiting the next head coach in Raleigh, and he has the recruiting chops and personality to potentially succeed in a big way.
He makes far less money than the other top candidates, already has the local recruiting ties, and understands what it takes to win in the ACC from his time in the region.
3/2 UPDATE: Kevin Keatts is another coach prominently linked with the NC State opening. Keatts is coaching in-state at UNC Wilmington where he has turned around that program. He's another solid option.
3/13 UPDATE: UNC Wilmington earned a No. 12 seed and will face No. 5 seed Virginia Thursday at 12:40 pm. There's been major buzz the last couple of days related to Keatts and NC State, and we believe he's a serious candidate for the position.
Chris Holtmann has kept the train rolling at Butler.
CHRIS HOLTMANN (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Butler
QUICK NOTES: Chris Holtmann is one of only two coaches in Butler history to lead the Bulldogs to the NCAA Tournament in each of his first two seasons – Brad Stevens is the other. Holtmann’s teams have not only made the NCAA Tournament in each season, the Bulldogs have advanced to the Second Round in both 2015 and 2016.
In just two seasons, Holtmann has already won 45 games at Butler. His teams are an impressive 22-14 in BIG EAST play. Holtmann will add Butler’s highest-rated recruiting class in program history for the 2016-17 season, a class that was ranked as high as 20th on National Signing Day.
Butler already has over 20 wins this season.
He also has ties to North Carolina, spending three seasons as head coach at Garner-Webb from 2010-2013.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Media reports are linking Holtmann with the job, and we do believe NC State will evaluate him... we expect him to be on the list. However, he also could be a legitimate option at Illinois or Indiana, should that job open up.
3/2 UPDATE: Chris Holtmann's name is being mentioned related to the NC State opening more and more. Holtmann, like Wade, remains a legitimate candidate.
3/13 UPDATE: Butler earned a No. 4 seed and will face No. 13 seed Winthrop Thursday at 1:30 pm. We believe Holtmann, while under consideration, isn't as strong an option for NC State right now.
Cuonzo Martin is a proven recruiter who builds programs.
CUONZO MARTIN (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, California
SALARY: $1.54 Million
BUYOUT: $1.1 Million
QUICK NOTES: Boasting a track record of success that includes a conference Coach of the Year honor and postseason berths six of the past seven seasons, Cuonzo Martin is regarded as one of the top basketball coaches in the game.
In his first season at California in 2014-15, Martin directed the Golden Bears to 18 wins and a run to the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 Tournament. Under his tutelage, Tyrone Wallace successfully transitioned to the point guard role. Wallace was named a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award recognizing the nation’s top point guard in his first season at the position. The point guard finished the season as the only individual in the Pac-12 to place in the top five in the conference in scoring, rebounding and assists. David Kravish completed his career as the school’s all-time leader in blocks and one of the program’s top scorers and rebounders of all-time.
Martin and his staff signed a consensus national top-10 recruiting class for the 2015-16 season, including top-five overall prospects in Ivan Rabb and Jaylen Brown along with forward Roman Davis of Los Angeles. The 2015-16 season saw the Bears go a perfect 18-0 at home for the best single-season home record at Haas Pavilion, finishing the year with a 19-game overall home winning streak. Cal’s defense was tops in the league, and the Bears limited opponents to a league-low 67.3 points per game while allowing just 39.6 percent of field goals -- the only team in the Pac-12 to limit opponents to under 40 percent.
The Bears capped off 2015-16 with a No. 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament, the highest seed in program history. Brown was named a USBWA Freshman All-American as well as the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year en route to a No. 3 overall selection by the Boston Celtics in the 2016 NBA Draft. Wallace joined Brown as Martin’s second Bear prospect drafted, selected in the second round by the Utah Jazz.
Prior to California, Martin served as the head coach at Tennessee for three seasons, guiding the Volunteers to a spot in the Sweet 16 of the 2014 NCAA Tournament.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Martin was mentioned at times during the previous search. He's a grinder who builds program, stresses defense and a winning culture, and has a lot of traits that appeal to college ADs. Given his time at Cal and Tennessee, he can recruit nationally, which is a major plus.
Martin is a winner. At jobs similar to NC State, he's had just one sub-.500 record as a head coach and has finished in the top five of his conference in four of five full seasons at Tennessee and California respectively.
He would also be a familiar name for Wolfpack Chancellor Randy Woodson, who previously spent time at Purdue, Martin's alma mater.
3/2 UPDATE: Cuonzo Martin could be looking to move on from Cal after doing a solid job with the Bears in three seasons. He's another name who has been linked to NC State, but he's also a candidate for other potential openings such as Missouri and Illinois.
3/13 UPDATE: Cal didn't make the NCAA Tournament, and we are close to removing Martin from the Big Board, although there is major speculation he's looking to leave Cal.
Could Scott Drew be looking to move on from Baylor?
SCOTT DREW (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Baylor
SALARY: $2.77 Million
QUICK NOTES: Drew took over at Baylor in 2003 and after a slow start has built the Bears into a consistent power in the Big 12. Baylor’s 17-6 postseason record over the last eight seasons is the nation’s sixth-best among teams with at least three NCAA?Tournament appearances. The Bears went 5-0 to win the 2013 NIT title, posted 3-1 records on their way to the Elite Eight in both the 2010 and 2012 NCAA?Tournaments, BU went 2-1 to advance to the 2014 Sweet 16, and Drew led Baylor to four wins en route to the 2009 NIT title game.
Baylor’s 17 postseason wins since 2009 rank eighth nationally behind only Kentucky (25), North Carolina (25), Duke (21), Michigan State (20), Louisville (18), Kansas (18) and Connecticut (18).
Drew is the youngest of 12 coaches nationally to lead his current team to three Sweet 16s since 2010. He is the only coach to guide Baylor to eight postseason appearances and is responsible for 17 of the program’s 20 all-time postseason wins. His teams have averaged 24 wins over the last nine seasons, giving Baylor a school-record nine straight winning campaigns. Drew has compiled a 270-183 overall record with a 250-172 mark in 13 seasons at Baylor.
Baylor has also had six NBA?Draft picks since 2012, which ranks sixth nationally behind only Kentucky (19), Duke (10), Syracuse (10), Kansas (eight) and North Carolina (eight).
CONNECTING THE DOTS: If NC State is looking for a Power Five coach to make a move, it might be Drew. He's done great things at Baylor and has developed a reputation for being a strong recruiter as well as excelling in player development.
NC State has had issues with building a "program." Drew has done that at Baylor, as the Bears are currently ranked in the Top 15. How good has he been at Baylor? The Bears had 4 total NCAA apperances, with the last coming in 1988, prior to Drew's arrival. He's been to four in five years.
3/2 UPDATE: We haven't heard any new buzz on Scott Drew related to the NC State coaching job, but there are rumblings he could be looking at other opportunities.
3/13 UPDATE: Baylor has earned a No. 3 seed and will face No. 14 seed New Mexico State Friday at 12:40 pm. We're hearing there is mutual interest between NC State and Drew, but we aren't sure how serious a candidate he is for the Wolfpack.
Ed Cooley has done a great job at Providence.
ED COOLEY (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Providence
SALARY: $1.6 Million
QUICK NOTES: Ed Cooley is probably one of the more underrated coaches in the country.
He learned the ropes from his time as an assistant under Al Skinner at Boston College. Cooley spent nine years as Skinner's right-hand man, which included a Big East Title (2000-2001), a Big East Tournament Title and five NCAA Tournament bids.
Cooley then went out and proved he could build programs as the head man. Fairfield hired Cooley in 2006, and he spent five seasons at the school, increasing the team's wins total every season. In his fifth season he led Fairfield to 25 wins and the MAAC regular season title.
Following his fourth year he was a finalist for the BC job (who had just fired Al Skinner) and they chose to go in another direction... a year later, Providence capitalized on what might have been a mistake by BC. The Friars hired Cooley, who took over for Keno Davis... inheriting a program that hadn't made the NCAAs in seven years.
Once again, Cooley started to build. 15 wins... 19 wins.. 23 wins (and a Big East Tournament TItle)... 22 wins... 24 wins... this year's team is currently in 3rd place in the Big East with a 20-11/10-8 mark.
The tournament title in 2014 was just the second in school history, and the first since 1994.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Cooley has a strong reputation as a program builder. He's a good recruiter and has a strong reputation for coaching up his players... I really believe he's another quality candidate that NC State should look closely at.
He is familiar with the ACC from his time at Boston College, he's currently doing a great job in the Big East, and he's a young, aggressive recruiter who excels at developing talent.
3/13 UPDATE: Providence will open play in Dayton against USC on Tuesday. We believe Cooley is one of the candidates NC State has researched and is evaluating, but we're not sure how high he is on the Wolfpack's list.
Richard Pitino did one of the of the best coaching jobs in the country this season.
RICHARD PITINO (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Minnesota
SALARY: $1.6 Million
QUICK NOTES: The young Pitino, Richard, spent eight seasons as an assistant, including stints at Louisville and Florida, before landing his first head coaching job in 2012 at FIU. After one season he was hired to rebuild Minnesota, and he's on his way to doing just that.
The Gophers won 25 games and the NIT his first season and followed it up with two down years but have rebounded in a big way this year. He led the Gophers to a double-bye in the Big Ten Tournament with an 11-7 conference record, and a total of 23 wins, which ties the school record.
Minnesota, which won eight of its last nine Big Ten games, is the NCAA's most improved team from the 2015-16 campaign. Pitino becomes the second Minnesota mentor to earn Big Ten Coach of the Year honors and the first since Jim Dutcher in 1981-82.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: He's the same age as Will Wade, but he's coaching in the Big Ten. That might matter. He's been recruiting on this level for years, which is where his assistant coaching jobs at Louisville and Florida, two programs who recruit on a national level, are a positive.
Again, we're not sure how high Pitino is on NC State's board, and maybe they won't seriously pursue the son of a Hall of Fame coaching currently in the ACC (wonder Richard be an ideal replacement for his father?), but when you're checking over all potential candidates, you have to look at a young coach with his resume, right?
3/13 UPDATE: Minnesota earned a No. 5 seed and faces No. 12 seed Middle Tennessee State at 4:00 on Thursday. We believe Pitino is a candidate that NC State has researched, but we're unsure how he is on the Wolfpack's list.
GREG MCDERMOTT (LINK TO BIO)
Greg McDermott has put Creighton back on the map nationally.
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Creighton
SALARY: $1.4 Million
QUICK NOTES: McDermott has made multiple stops during his lengthy coaching career, and is now heading up Creighton in the new Big East Conference.
The Blue Jays won three titles his first three seasons, while in the Missouri Valley Conference and finished in second-place his first year in the Big East in 2013-2014, winning 14 league games and 27 overall. After a rebuilding year he had Creighton back in postseason play by winning 20 games last year, and this season's squad is currently 25-9 overall.
McDermott has a strong reputation for being able to develop talent while playing an exciting brand of basketball.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: McDermott is another Power Five coach who could be looking to move, but will NC State be interested? He doesn't have any real ties in the area and struggled previously as a head coach at Iowa State in the Big 12.
3/2 UPDATE: We haven't heard any new buzz on Greg McDermott related to the NC State coaching job.
3/13 UPDATE: Creighton earned a No. 6 seed and faces No. 11 seed Rhode Island at 430 on Friday. We believe McDermott remains a coach on NC State's radar.
Pat Kelsey has ACC connections.
PAT KELSEY (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Winthrop
QUICK NOTES: In just four seasons, Kelsey has resurrected the proud basketball tradition at Winthrop. After taking over a program that had won 12 and 13 games respectively the prior two seasons, Kelsey and the Eagles have won 62 games over the last three seasons.
This past season the Eagles won 23 games, which ties for the 4th most in a single-season in the history of the program. Kelsey’s 76 wins rank second behind only current Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall for most victories (81) the first four seasons in the program’s Div. I history.
In 2016, for the third consecutive season, Kelsey and the Eagles advanced to the nationally televised Big South conference championship game. Over the course of his first four seasons, Kelsey is tied with Marshall for the most wins in the Big South with 41.
This year's team is 26-6 overall and 15-3 in league play and has clinched a share of the Big South regular season title while winning the tournament title.
Prior to Winthrop, Kelsey was an assistant coach at Xavier and Wake Forest. At Wake he played a role in the development of NBA talents such as James Johnson, Ishmael Smith, and Al-Farouq Aminu.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Kelsey certainly has ties to the state given he's at Winthrop and spent five years at Wake Forest as an assistant coach. He has completed a rebuild of Winthrop and is considered one of the top mid-major coaching candidates on the market.
3/2 UPDATE: We haven't heard any new buzz on Pat Kelsey related to the NC State coaching job.
3/13 UPDATE: Winthrop earned a No. 13 seed and will face No. 4 seed Butler Thursday at 1:30 pm. We believe Kelsey is a candidate for NC State... a coach they are researching and considering.
Steve Prohm just led Iowa State to the Big 12 title.
STEVE PROHM (LINK TO BIO)
CURRENT JOB: Head Coach, Iowa State
SALARY: $1.6 Million
BUYOUT: $2.25 Million
QUICK NOTES: A long-time assistant at Murray State, Prohm got his first head coaching job at the school in 2011 and starting winning, earning national coach of the year honors by some publications after leading the Racers to a 31-2 record and OVC title. He won two titles his four years at the school and won his division three times before being named head coach at Iowa State in 2015.
At ISU he inherited a solid program and has kept winning. 23 victories his first season, Prohm followed it up with second place finish in the strong Big 12 this year which he capped by winning the Big 12 Tournament title over the weekend.
He is currently 46-22 and 22-14 in two seasons at Iowa State.
CONNECTING THE DOTS: Prohm is considered one of the top young coaches in the country, and his success at multiple programs would likely be appealing to Debbie Yow.
However, he is in a good situation at Iowa State (although there have been some question marks about the AD), and he has a rather large buyout.
3/13 UPDATE: Iowa State has earned a No. 5 seed and faces No. 12 seed Nevada at 9:57 Thursday night. We believe Prohm is a coach that NC State could in fact be researching.