Over the past few years, coaches like Shaka Smart, Josh Pastner, Steve Prohm, and Kevin Willard have been able to run a good college basketball program at a young age. Now that those coaches are getting older, it is not as much of a surprise that their programs are successful. Here are the top 10 college basketball head coaches under the age of 40.
10. Mike Boynton-Oklahoma State (37 Years Old)
Coach Boynton has not been at Oklahoma State very long. In two years with the Cowboys, Boynton has a 33-35 record. In his first season at Oklahoma State, he lead the Cowboys to the NIT Quarterfinals. Oklahoma State took down Florida Gulf Coast and Stanford before losing to Western Kentucky 92-84. Although his second season was not very successful, it is very hard to come into a power five conference as a first time head coach and win as many games as he has. Oklahoma State was Boynton’s first head coaching job. Prior to being hired as the head coach of Oklahoma State, Boynton was an assistant at Oklahoma State behind Brad Underwood.
9. LaVall Jordan-Butler (40 Years Old)
Before coaching at Butler, LaVall Jordan was the head coach at Milwaukee. While at Milwaukee, Jordan had an 11-24 record. After Chris Holtmann signed with Ohio State, Jordan was hired to replace Holtmann. In his first season at Butler, he had a 21-14 record. They were a 10 seed in the NCAA Tournament and ended up beating 7 seed Arkansas. In the second round, they were defeated by 2 seed Purdue 76-73. In his second season at Butler, Jordan had a 16-17 record. Butler still managed to get into the NIT where they lost to Nebraska 80-76. Jordan will look to get the Bulldogs back to NCAA Tournament in his third season.
8. Nick McDevitt-Middle Tennessee State (40 Years Old)
While at UNC Asheville, head coach Nick McDevitt made a name for himself. He had a 98-66 record and won consecutive Big South Conference regular season titles in his last two years there. He was named Big South Coach of the Year after the 2017 season. After 5 years at Middle Tennessee State, Mcdevitt was hired to be the head coach at Middle Tennessee State. In Mcdevitt’s first season at Middle Tennessee State, his team struggled. The Blue Raiders had a 11-21 record. Although that was McDevitt’s worst record of his coaching career, he will look to turn things back around in this upcoming season.
7. Matt Lottich-Valparaiso (36 Years Old)
Coach Lottich has been the head coach of Valparaiso for three seasons. Valparaiso was his first head coaching job after he was an assistant under Bryce Drew. In his first season at Valparaiso, he led the Crusaders to a Horizon League Regular Season Championship. After his first season, Valparaiso switched conferences from the Horizon League to Missouri Valley Conference. The Crusaders have struggled their first two seasons in the MVC. At Valparaiso, Lottich has a 54-44 record. Lottich will try to get the Crusaders to the NCAA Tournament this year.
6. Travis Steele-Xavier (37 Years Old)
In just one season at Xavier, head coach Travis Steele led the Musketeers to the second round of the NIT. Although the ultimate goal is to make the NCAA Tournament and win a national championship, it is still very impressive to lead your team to the NIT in your first season as a head coach. The Musketeers finished the season with a 19-16 record. Before being named the head coach of Xavier, he was the assistant coach at Xavier under Chris Mack for 8 years. When Chris Mack left for the head coaching job at Louisville, this opened the job up for Steele. With the success he had in his first season at Xavier, I believe Travis Steele will be able to get the Musketeers to the NCAA Tournament consistently.
5. Andrew Toole-Robert Morris (38 Years Old)
This upcoming season will be Robert Morris head coach Andrew Toole’s 10th year as the head coach of Robert Morris. In 9 seasons, he has a 168-140 record. He has led the Colonials to 1 NCAA Tournament, 2 NIT tournaments, and 2 CIT tournaments. After finishing with a 14-2 conference record in 2014, Toole was named NEC Coach of the Year. In the three following seasons after leading Robert Morris to the NCAA Tournament, Toole had a 40-51 record with all three seasons being under .500. Toole was able to get Robert Morris back on track this past season. The Colonials had an 18-17 record and made the second round of the CIT. This season Toole will try and get his team back in championship of the NEC.
4. Bob Richey-Furman (36 Years Old)
Many people know the Furman Paladins as the team to upset the Villanova Wildcats and the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers this past season. Coach Bob Richey has helped put Furman basketball back on the map. In the two years he has been at Furman, he has a 48-18 record. In his second season with the Paladins, Richey had Furman ranked as high as 23rd in the country. Furman ended up losing in the second round of the NIT, but that was very impressive for a team like Furman. If Richey keeps the Paladins playing like they have, he could receive a few looks for being hired by a power five school in the next few years.
3. Richard Pitino-Minnesota (36 Years Old)
Being the son of former Louisville Cardinals head coach Rick Pitino will make the expectations of yourself very high. But Richard Pitino has been following his father’s footsteps. Pitino started his head coaching career at Florida International University (FIU). Pitino was only at FIU for one season and finished with an 18-14 record. After his first season at FIU, Pitino was hired by Minnesota to be their head coach. In Pitino’s first season with the Golden Gophers, Minnesota had a 25-13 record and went on to win the NIT Championship. Since then, Pitino has lead Minnesota to 2 NCAA Tournaments. Pitino was named Big Ten Coach of the Year in 2017. Heading into next season, Pitino will look to get the Golden Gophers back in the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season.
2. Archie Miller-Indiana (40 Years Old)
Archie Miller made a name for himself while at Dayton. He led Dayton to 4 consecutive NCAA Tournaments. In his first NCAA Tournament as a head coach, Miller led Dayton to the Elite 8 where they lost to the number one overall seed Florida 62-52. Miller had a 139-63 overall while at Dayton. After 6 seasons at Dayton, Miller was hired to be the head coach of Indiana. In two seasons at Indiana, Miller has struggled a bit. Miller had a 16-15 record in his first season there and played in no postseason tournament. This past season, Miller led the Hoosiers to a 19-16 record and the NIT Quarterfinals. Miller will look to get the Hoosiers back to the NCAA Tournament in the upcoming season.
1. Will Wade-LSU (36 Years Old)
All three schools that Will Wade has been the head coach of have been successful in his time there. Wade started his head coaching career at Chattanooga. In two seasons at Chattanooga, Wade had a 40-25 record. After resigning at Chattanooga, Wade was hired to be the head coach at VCU. While at VCU, Wade had a 51-20 record and led the Rams to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances. After his second season at VCU, head coach Will Wade left to be the head coach of LSU. In his first season at LSU, the Tigers had an 18-15 record and made it to the second round of the NIT. In his second season at LSU, Wade led the Tigers to a 28-7 record. The Tigers were the SEC regular season champions and made it to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. Although Wade was unable to coach the NCAA Tournament after being suspended indefinitely over the basketball recruiting scandal, Wade was reinstated by LSU and will be the head coach for the season. With the talent Wade has on the roster this year, the Tigers could make it to their first final four since 2006.