10). Mick Cronin (Cincinnati Bearcats)- In 11 seasons at Cincinnati, coach Cronin has taken the Bearcats to 7 straight tournament appearances. Since taking over Cincinnati as head coach in 2006, Cronin’s overall record at Cincinnati is 305-158. With Cincinnati moving from the Big East to the American Athletic Conference, their record has (rightfully) improved. West Virginia head coach Bobby Huggins left Cincinnati after a great tenure there and maybe now the time has come for coach Cronin to do the same.
9). Bobby Hurley (Arizona State Sun Devils)- In 2014-2015 in his second season as head coach, former Duke point guard Bobby Hurley led his Buffalo Bulls to an NCAA appearance. The popular pick for an upset was the Bulls, however they fell just short of that goal. After that, coach Hurley moved on to Arizona State where his team has failed to reach the tournament in 2 seasons there. While the resume is not hire-worthy for a school like Indiana, Hurley could be just the kind of guy Indiana needs to retool the program.
8). Scott Drew (Baylor Bears)- Becoming coach of the Bears in 2003 was a great way to rebuild this Baylor program. In 14 years, Drew has led the Bears to 6 NCAA Tournament appearances and has reached the Elite 8, twice. His record with Baylor is 277-178. Having graduated from Butler and having ties to Valparasio, Drew reuniting with an Indiana school makes nothing but perfect sense. Especially since this Indiana team could use a head coach with experience.
7). Chris Mack (Xavier Musketeers)- Chris Mack was an assistant with Xavier and Wake Forest before fulfilling his dreams to become an NCAA Head Coach. Since taking over the Musketeers in 2009, Mack has led Xavier to the NCAA tournament 7 out of 8 years. His overall record is 184-90. Mack also worked under Arizona’s Head Coach, Sean Miller during his stint with the Musketeers. Miller has had terrific success in his promotion to Arizona, so maybe Mack would find that same opportunity here with the Hoosiers.
6). Tony Bennett (Virginia Cavaliers)- Tony Bennett is mostly known for his current tenure with the Virginia Cavaliers. The Cavaliers have been a staple in the NCAA Tournament and Bennett’s defensive minded ways have been the driving point. Many people overlook Bennett’s stint with Washington State where he coached NBA All-Star, Klay Thompson. Klay is considered one of the best two players in the NBA and that’s just the kind of coach the Hoosiers could use. With the Cavaliers, Bennet has posted a 188-82 record.
5). Gregg Marshall (Wichita State Shockers)- Marshal has been a long-time coach since 1998 where he coached Winthrop 9 seasons, posting a 194-83 record. They made the NCAA Tournament seven of those nine appearances. In 2007 Marshall left Winthrop and took over at Wichita State where he has recorded an outstanding record of 260-89. Marshall has led Wichita State to an NIT Championship and one NCAA Final Four appearance. Marshall is one of the hottest names for Indiana’s coaching vacancy and with a winning percentage of 73%, you can see why.
4). Chris Holtmann (Butler Bulldogs)- Chris Holtmann is a very young coach with a lot left in the tank. While his resume’ may be small, his recent success with the Bulldogs is not. Holtmann led the Bulldogs to, two wins over the National Champions Villanova this season and they reached their highest every seed in the NCAA Tournament with a 4 seed. Holtmann is already in Indianapolis with a solid job at Butler, but Indiana would be a huge stepping stone for him. While many Indiana fans are screaming for an ex-Butler coach in Brad Stevens, they might underestimate how solid Chris Holtmann would be as their head coach in Indiana. Holtmann has gone 69-30 as coach of Butler.
3). Dane Fife (Michigan State Spartans)- Dane Fife has been an assistant coach under Tom Izzo for the previous 7 seasons. Before that, Fife was head coach of the IPFW Mastodons. While IPFW wasn’t the greatest gig for Fife, he was able to improve his winning record every single season. Fife was a highly-coveted assistant coach by many schools in the Big Ten (Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State and Purdue), but ultimately chose to work under the most successful coach of this bunch, Michigan State’s Tom Izzo. Learning under Izzo may have been the best career move for Fife, as Izzo’s resume will only help Fife land an eventual gig someday/ As far as Dane’s playing career, Fife played at Indiana University for coach Bob Knight and Mike Davis. When Knight was fired, Fife almost transferred schools. However, he rode it out with Mike Davis and made it to the NCAA Championship game where Indiana lost to Maryland. Many fans would be glad to see Fife return to Indiana, and take over this team.
2.) Steve Alford (UCLA Bruins)- one of Indiana University’s most beloved players, Steve Alford is exactly what the Indiana fans want. A guy who was born and raised in Franklin, Indiana. He attended New Castle High School and averaged 37.7 points per game as a senior. Coach Knight loved Steve and brought him to the Hoosiers to be the leader of the team. In all four seasons, he was named the teams MVP. He was an extremely smooth offensive player and the fans loved him. After Indiana, he had a short-lived career in the NBA and then focused on coaching. Alford started coaching in 1991, when he was named head coach of Manchester. Throughout his career in coaching, Alford has had a 4-year stint with Southwest Missouri State, an 8-year stint with the Iowa Hawkeyes, a 6-year run with the Lobos of New Mexico and he is currently head coach of the UCLA Bruins. His overall coaching record stands at 557-278. Alford has been to the NCAA tournament 11 times and NIT 7 times. Former player, and current ESPN analyst Dan Dakich said, “Alford is the only one for the job.” Pretty strong words right there, and many Indiana fans are (for once) in agreeance with Dan Dakich.
1). Dana Altman (Oregon Ducks)- this one might come as a shock to you, but Dana Altman from Oregon would be a perfect fit for the Indiana job. Altman did just sign a 7-year extension with the Ducks, but Indiana is a bigger named basketball program than Oregon. It would be a huge accomplishment if Indiana could some-how pull this off, seeing the recent success Altman has had. Altman has spent the last 7 seasons with the Ducks, but served for 16 years prior to that as head coach of Creighton. Dana also had a short run with Kansas State, where he led them to the NIT twice and the NCAA Tournament 1 time in 4 seasons. Overall, Altman’s career record is 593-312 (66%). Since 1989, coach Altman has been named Coach of the Year in his conference 7 times (one at each school). To top it all off, Coach Altman is one of only six active coaches in NCAA Division I with 19 consecutive winning seasons. He is part of an exclusive
fraternity that includes Mike Krzyzewski, Tom Izzo, Roy Williams, Bill Self and Jim Boeheim.