Richard William Pitino is the head coach of the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers men's basketball team. He is the son of former Louisville head coach Rick Pitino. After attending St. Sebastian's School in Needham, Richard Pitino earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history at Providence College in 2005. During his time at Providence, Pitino was the manager for the Friars men's basketball team under Tim Welsh. For two years, he served as an assistant basketball coach for Saint Andrew's School in nearby Barrington, Rhode Island. In 2004-2005, he worked as an administrative assistant under Tom Herrion at the College of Charleston. In 2005, he was hired by coach Ron Everhart to serve as assistant coach at Northeastern University and followed Everhart to Duquesne University the following year, he was hired on at Louisville in October. In his first stint with the Cardinals, he helped them advance to back-to-back NCAA Elite Eight appearances, he left the University of Louisville and accepted a position to work under Billy Donovan at the University of Florida on April 17, 2009.
During his time at Florida, they advanced to two NCAA tournaments including one Elite Eight appearance in 2010. He left Florida on April 2011, to become the associate head coach at Louisville. In his second stint at the school he helped the Cardinals advance to the NCAA Final Four and finish with a 30-10 overall record. Pitino left his position as the associate head coach at Louisville to become the head coach at FIU on April 15, 2012 replacing Isiah Thomas. With only six players remaining from the previous season, not all of them on scholarship, Pitino cobbled together a team and coached a high-pressure defense that finished eighth in the nation in steals, he was able to compile an 18-14 record in his first season as head coach. This was FIU's first winning season since 1999-2000 and most wins overall since 1997-98, his FIU team had the best conference record in school history. Additionally, FIU reached the Sun Belt Tournament Title game as a four seed, before falling to Western Kentucky in the tournament championship game, 65-63.
On April 3, 2013, despite having only one year of head coaching experience at FIU, Pitino was hired to become the 17th head coach in University of Minnesota history, replacing Tubby Smith. On April 1, 2014, in Pitino's first season at Minnesota, the Golden Gophers defeated Florida State University 67–64 in overtime in the NIT semifinals, breaking a school record with its 24th win of the season. On April 3, 2014 one year to the date he was hired, Pitino won his first NIT Championship by defeating coach Larry Brown's SMU team 65–63, securing a school record 25th win; the win was the Gophers first NIT championship since 1998 - although, vacated in 1999 - and their first "official" NIT title since 1993. Following a bad third-year at Minnesota, Coach Pitino orchestrated an impressive turnaround by improving the team's record by 16 wins, utilizing a revamped roster that included five new contributors; the turnaround helped earn Richard Pitino the Big Ten Coach of the Year award on March 6th, 2017.
This was just the second Big Ten coach of the year award in Minnesota school history, Minnesota's first since 1982. That season Pitino guided the Gophers to an 11-7 record in the Big Ten, Minnesota's most wins in conference in 20 years. On March 21, 2019, in the first round of the 2019 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, No. 10 Minnesota faced No. 7 seed Louisville, a school he helped coach and a program which his father Rick had been head coach of for 16 years. Minnesota defeated the Cardinals 86–76 to move on to the Round of 32. In the Round of 32, the Gophers lost to #2 Michigan State 70-50. Minnesota profile Duquesne profile
Sid Hartman is an American sports journalist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune and the WCCO 830 AM radio station. For 20 years, he was a panelist on the weekly television program "Sports Show with Mike Max," which aired Sunday nights at 9:30 p.m. on WUCW 23 in the Twin Cities metro area. Raised in north Minneapolis and dropping out of high school when he started delivering papers for the Minneapolis Tribune, Hartman received no formal writing training. Hartman penned his first column for the Minneapolis Daily Times on September 11, 1945, continues to report, now for the Minneapolis Star Tribune; as a 27-year-old in 1947, Hartman became the acting general manager of the Minneapolis Lakers. Hartman helped build what would become the first dynasty in the NBA. Sid Hartman has been a popular and read sports columnist throughout his career. Hartman's columns have always been strong on reporting. Dick Cullum, Hartman's first editor, explained it this way: "Writers are a dime a dozen, but reporters are impossible to find."
Steve Rushin of Sports Illustrated, noted, "English sometimes appears to be his second language." Hartman has appeared as a radio sportscaster and commentator for years on Minneapolis's WCCO Radio. One of the elements of his style - caricatured by local comics and other radio personalities - is his habit while interviewing a sports figure of referring to him or her as "my close personal friend". Over the years, his "close personal friends" have included the likes of George Steinbrenner, Bobby Knight, Lou Holtz, Carl Yastrzemski. Hartman has published two books: Sid!: The Sports Legends, the Inside Scoops, the Close Personal Friends is an autobiography of Sid Hartman The book discusses many of the events in the Minnesota sports scene from 1940 onward. Sid Hartman's Great Minnesota Sports Moments On Oct. 10, 2010, a statue of Hartman was unveiled outside of Target Center in Downtown Minneapolis. The Minnesota Vikings honored Hartman by naming the media entrance at U. S. Bank Stadium after and with photos adorning the media entrance of U.
S. Bank Stadium, plus named the interview room at their new practice facility in Eagan, MN after Sid Hartman. At the Italian restaurant Vescio's in Dinkytown, Minneapolis, a pizza, the Sid's Special, was named in tribute of him. On November 17, 2018 the University of MN renamed the press box at TCF Bank Stadium the Sid Hartman Press Box; the University release a statement ending with, "The Sid Hartman Press Box is a tribute to his work, his life and his legacy." Hartman's name was among tens of thousands on Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff's client list. It is not publicly known how much money, if any, Hartman lost with Madoff when the $50 billion fraud was exposed late in 2008. Hartman's son Chad Hartman has a radio show on WCCO. In December 2016, Hartman was hospitalized in Minneapolis after breaking his right hip, he underwent surgery to repair his hip the following day. As a result, Hartman announced. On January 13, 2017 Sid was back to work attending the news conference for new Gophers football coach PJ Fleck.
Star Tribune: Sid Hartman WCCO: Sid Hartman Yesterday's News blog: Hartman's first column
Minnesota Golden Gophers men's basketball
Minnesota Golden Gophers men's basketball team represents the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus. The Golden Gophers have played in the Big Ten since the conference began sponsoring basketball in 1905 and play their home games in Williams Arena; the Gophers had great success in the early years of basketball, but have been overshadowed by other programs since the end of World War I. In total, the Gophers have won nine Big Ten championships, but only four since 1919. College basketball research organizations have retroactively awarded Minnesota national championships in 1902, 1903, 1919; the team has had several instances of NCAA sanctions on the program that have affected performance and recruiting. In the 1970s, the Gophers were in a violent brawl with the Ohio State Buckeyes and were barred from post-season appearances for two seasons after an incident involving the illegal resale of tickets. Still more severe was the mid-1990s academic scandal under then-coach Clem Haskins that resulted in the forfeit of a Final Four appearance.
The Gophers team formed without any organized coach. L. J. Cooke took over the team in 1897. Cooke was put on the University payroll on a part-time basis in early 1897 and full-time by the fall. Cooke remained the coach of the Gophers for 28 seasons, his.649 winning percentage is the second highest in school history. Dave MacMillan, who coached the team from 1927 to 1942 and 1945 to 1948, had the second longest tenure as coach at 18 seasons. John Wooden succeeded McMillan as Gophers head coach; the Gophers have had several NBA coaches grace the sidelines. John Kundla took over as Gophers head coach. George Hanson was assistant coach under both Kundla and Fitch and was head coach for the 1970-71 season. Bill Fitch and Bill Musselman both coached the team for a couple seasons before departing for the NBA and ABA where each had success and coached for many years; the program has had a fair degree of stability with their coaching staff. Tubby Smith became the 16th head coach in Gopher basketball history when hired in 2007.
Five coaches led the team for more than 10 seasons: Cooke, McMillan, O. B. Cowles, Jim Dutcher, Clem Haskins. On March 25, 2013, Tubby Smith was fired after failing to reach the Sweet Sixteen again; the Gophers hired Richard Pitino on April 3, 2013. The Golden Gophers have had many successful players come through the program throughout its history. In the early years of basketball, when the Gophers had success, they recruited some of the best players in the country. George Tuck was a dominant center, the first All-America for the Gophers in 1905. Frank Lawler was another early star: he led the Big Ten in scoring in 1911 and was named to the All-America team, helped the Gophers to a contested conference title. In 1950, Lawler was named the greatest player in Gopher basketball history, but the subsequent decades of Gopher basketball have forgotten his legacy. Hall of Fame coach John Kundla was a Gophers star and helped lead the team to its 1937 Big Ten Championship. With the decline of the stature of the Gophers program, fewer elite players have joined the team.
The diminished reputation has not, prevented some superior athletes from coming to the Minneapolis campus. Lou Hudson had his number retired. Baseball Hall of Famer Dave Winfield played for the Gophers in the early 1970s, he played at the same time as star post player Jim Brewer. Mychal Thompson was the first overall pick in the 1978 NBA Draft. Among Thompson's teammates were former Minnesota Timberwolves, Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards head coach Flip Saunders, as well as basketball hall of fame forward Kevin McHale. Trent Tucker led the 1982 squad to the Big Ten Championship. Voshon Lenard was a key player for the Gophers in the early 1990s and went on to play more than a decade in the NBA. Willie Burton once scored 53 points in an NBA game with the Philadelphia 76ers. Other former Gophers with long NBA careers include Randy Breuer, Mark Olberding, Archie Clark, Jim Petersen, Ray Williams. Five players from the 1997 Final Four team played in the NBA: Bobby Jackson, Sam Jacobson, Quincy Lewis, John Thomas, Trevor Winter.
No former Gophers play in the NBA. Jamal Abu-Shamala, a Jordanian-American, plays internationally for the Jordan national basketball team; this roster is current for the 2018–19 men's basketball season. The precise founding of the Gophers men's basketball program at the University of Minnesota is somewhat nebulous. Unlike many other universities with foundations, the team did not form as a conscious act of the campus administration; the University's student newspaper at the time, the Ariel, reported on basketball throughout 1895 as the sport was introduced to the campus from a rival school, Minnesota A&M in St. Paul incorporated into the larger University of Minnesota Twin Cities. In 1896, a team from the school began to participate in a league with the Agriculture school, YMCA teams, other local associations; the establishment of the Armory on-campus gave the team a new place to play. In February 1897, L. J. Cooke, a director of the Minneapolis YMCA, was hired on a part-time basis to coach the basketball program, became the full-time coach and director of physical education by the fall of that year.
Cooke was one of the first full-time professional coaches in all of college basketball and would remain at the program for 28 seasons. Cooke began to
Osborne Bryan "Ozzie" Cowles was an American basketball player and coach. He was the head men's basketball coach at Carleton College, River Falls State Teachers College, Dartmouth College, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, he was the head baseball coach and assistant basketball and football coach at Iowa State Teachers College, now the University of Northern Iowa during 1923–24. In 30 seasons as a collegiate head basketball coach, Cowles compiled a record of 416–189, his teams competed in the NCAA basketball tournament six times. At the time of his retirement in 1959, Cowles ranked among the top 15 college basketball coaches of all-time by number of games won, he has been inducted into the Helms Foundation Hall of Fame, the Dartmouth "Wearers of the Green," the University of Minnesota "M" Club Hall of Fame, the Carleton College Hall of Fame, the University of Wisconsin-River Falls Athletics Hall of Fame. Cowles was born in Minnesota, he was the son of Elizabeth Cowles. His father was a druggist and farmer in Traverse County, near the South Dakota border.
In his draft registration card completed in September 1918, Cowles indicated that he was living at Browns Valley and working for his father as a farm laborer. Cowles attended Carleton College in Minnesota. While at Carleton, Cowles played basketball and football, winning a total of 11 varsity letters, he was an All-State guard for the basketball team and was selected as the team captain during the 1920–21 and 1921–22 seasons. After Cowles scored 21 points against Coe College in 1921, The Coe College Cosmos praised his "whirlwind tactics in handling the ball" and noted, "Cowles is quick as a cat and heady—the personification of speed." During the two years in which Cowles was the captain, the Carleton basketball team compiled records of 13–4 and 14–2. He was selected as an All-State halfback while playing for the Carleton football team. After graduating from Carleton in 1922, Cowles began a coaching career, he began his coaching career as a high school coach in Rochester, Minnesota during the 1922–23 season.
In his first year as a coach, his Rochester team advanced to the semi-finals of the Minnesota state high school basketball tournament. Interviewed in January 1923, Cowles declared that basketball was the greatest sport in America because more take part in the game than any other game; as proof, Cowles noted that 175 men and boys and about 60 women were playing basketball in Rochester. During the 1923–24 academic year, Cowles coached football and basketball at Iowa State Teachers College—now known as Northern Iowa University, he was an assistant coach to the L. L. Mendenhall for the football and basketball teams and the head coach of the baseball team. In his one year as head baseball coach, he "turned out a team that won the Iowa conference championship" in 1924. In September 1924, Cowles accepted a position as the head basketball and baseball coach at his alma mater, Carleton College, he served as the head basketball and baseball coach from 1924 to 1930. In six years as head basketball coach, Cowles' teams compiled a 67–24 record for a.720 winning percentage.
They won Midwest Conference championships in three of Cowles' six seasons as head coach. At one point, Cowles' Carleton teams won 32 consecutive games on their home court and 48 out of 52 games overall. In April 1930, Cowles quit his coaching position at Carleton to accept a position with a Minneapolis bond firm. At the time of the 1930 United States Census, Osborne was living in Northfield and listed his occupation as bond salesman. In November 1932, Cowles was hired by the River Falls State Teachers College, now known as the University of Wisconsin–River Falls. Cowles was the athletic director and head baseball and basketball coach at River Falls from 1932 to 1936, his 1936 River Falls basketball team won a conference title. He compiled a 32–28 record in three years as the basketball coach at River Falls. In March 1936, Cowles was hired as the head basketball coach at Dartmouth College. Fritz Crisler, the football and basketball coach at Princeton University at the time, had seen Cowles' teams at Carleton College and recommended Cowles for the coaching position at Dartmouth.
Cowles was the head coach of the freshman football team at Dartmouth. Cowles was the head coach of the Dartmouth basketball team from 1936 to 1943 and 1944 to 1946. In his eight seasons as head coach, Dartmouth's basketball teams won the Ivy League championship seven times and finished in second place the other year, he compiled a record of 144–47 at Dartmouth. Dartmouth advanced to the NCAA basketball tournament four consecutive years during his tenure from 1941 to 1944. In March 1942, Cowles led Dartmouth to a 47–28 victory over Kentucky to win the East Championship, the team advanced to the 1942 NCAA Basketball Tournament title game against Stanford at Kansas City, Missouri; the championship game pitted Cowles against Stanford coach, Everett Dean, who had coached Cowles at Carleton College. Dean recalled prior to the championship game that Cowles was "one of the best guards to play under me." Dartmouth lost to Stanford in the championship game 53–38. In March 1943, Cowles stepped down from his coaching position due to service in the United States Navy.
He held the rank of lieutenant during World War II. In March 1944, while Cowles was fulfilling his military obligation, his Dartmouth basketball team
The Star Tribune is the largest newspaper in Minnesota. It originated as the Minneapolis Tribune in 1867 and the competing Minneapolis Daily Star in 1920. During the 1930s and 1940s Minneapolis's competing newspapers were consolidated, with the Tribune published in the morning and the Star in the evening, they merged in 1982. After a tumultuous period in which the newspaper was sold and re-sold and filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009, it was purchased by local businessman Glen Taylor in 2014; the Star Tribune serves Minneapolis and is distributed throughout the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area, the state of Minnesota and the Upper Midwest. It contains a mixture of national and local news, sports and lifestyle content. Journalists from the Star Tribune and its predecessor newspapers have won six Pulitzer Prizes, including two in 2013; the newspaper's headquarters is in downtown Minneapolis. The Star Tribune's roots date to the creation of the Minneapolis Daily Tribune by Colonel William S. King, William D. Washburn and Dorilus Morrison.
The newspaper went through several different editors and publishers during its first two decades, including John T. Gilman, George K. Shaw, Albert Shaw and Alden J. Blethen. In 1878 the Minneapolis Evening Journal began publication. On November 30, 1889, the Tribune headquarters in downtown Minneapolis caught fire. Seven people were killed and 30 injured, the building and presses were a total loss. In 1891, the Tribune was purchased by Gilbert A. Pierce and William J. Murphy for $450,000. Pierce sold his share to Thomas Lowry and Lowry sold it to Murphy, making Murphy the newspaper's sole owner, his business and legal background helped him structure the Tribune's debt and modernize its printing equipment. The newspaper experimented with partial-color printing and the use of halftone for photographs and portraits. In 1893, Murphy sent the Tribune's first correspondent to Washington, D. C; as Minneapolis grew, the newspaper's circulation expanded. In 1905, Murphy merged it with the Tribune, he died in 1918.
After a brief transitional period, Murphy's son Fred became the Tribune's publisher in 1921. The other half of the newspaper's history begins with the Minnesota Daily Star, founded on August 19, 1920, by elements of the agrarian Nonpartisan League and backed by Thomas Van Lear and Herbert Gaston; the Daily Star had difficulty attracting advertisers with its overt political agenda, went bankrupt in 1924. After its purchase by A. B. Frizzell and former New York Times executive John Thompson, the newspaper became the politically independent Minneapolis Daily Star. In 1935, the Cowles family of Des Moines, purchased the Star; the family patriarch, Gardner Cowles, Sr. had purchased The Des Moines Register and the Des Moines Tribune during the first decade of the century and managed them successfully. Gardner's son, John Cowles, Sr. moved to Minneapolis to manage the Star. Under him it had the city's highest circulation. In 1939 the Cowles family purchased the Minneapolis Evening Journal, merging the two newspapers into the Star-Journal.
Tribune publisher Fred Murphy died in 1940. The Tribune became the city's morning newspaper, the Star-Journal was the evening newspaper, they published a joint Sunday edition. A separate evening newspaper was spun off, which published until 1948. In 1944, John Cowles, Sr. hired Wisconsin native and former Tulsa Tribune editor William P. Steven as managing editor of the two newspapers. During his tenure in Minneapolis, he was president of the Associated Press Managing Editors Association in 1949 and first chairman of the organization's Continuing Study Committee. By August 1960 John Cowles, Jr. was vice president and associate editor of the two papers, it was soon apparent that he disapproved of Steven's hard-nosed approach to journalism. When Steven chafed under the younger Cowles's management, he was fired. After Steven's ouster, John Cowles, Jr. was editor of the two newspapers. He had a progressive political viewpoint, publishing editorials supporting the civil rights movement and liberal causes.
In 1982 the afternoon Star was discontinued due to low circulation, the staffs of the Star and Tribune were transferred to the merged Minneapolis Star and Tribune. Cowles, Jr. fired publisher Donald R. Dwight, his handling of Dwight's termination led to his removal as editor in 1983, although his family retained a controlling financial interest in the newspaper. In 1983, the Star Tribune challenged a Minnesota tax on paper and ink before the Supreme Court of the United States. In Minneapolis Star Tribune Co. v. Commissioner, the court found that the tax was a violation of the First Amendment. In 1987 the newspaper's name was simplified to Star Tribune, the slogan "Newspaper of the Twin Cities" was added. In 1998 the McClatchy Company purchased Cowles Media Company for $1.4 billion, ending the newspaper's 61-year history in the family in one of the largest sales in American newspaper history. Although McClatchy sold many of Cowles's smaller assets, i
John Albert Kundla was an American college and professional basketball coach. He was the first head coach for the Minneapolis Lakers of the National Basketball Association and its predecessors, the Basketball Association of America and the National Basketball League, serving 12 seasons, from 1947 to 1959, his teams won six league championships, one in the NBL, one in the BAA, four in the NBA. Kundla was the head basketball coach at the University of St. Thomas in Saint Paul for one season in 1946–47, at the University of Minnesota for ten seasons, from 1959 to 1968, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995. Kundla was born in the mining town of Star Junction, Pennsylvania to parents from Jakubany, at that time Austria-Hungary, now Slovakia, he moved to Minneapolis at age 5. After attending and playing basketball for Minneapolis Central High School, Kundla attended the University of Minnesota and was a standout for the Minnesota Golden Gophers basketball the late 1930s.
Following graduation, he stayed on at the university as an assistant coach to Dave MacMillan. He moved to the high school ranks as the head coach of DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After two years there, the United States entered World War II, Kundla joined the Navy, where he was assigned to LST units in both the European and Pacific theaters. After the war, he was hired to coach the College of St. Thomas. Following the Tommies' 1946–47 season, the new franchise Minneapolis Lakers extended an offer to Kundla to coach the team playing in the National Basketball League. Kundla turned however, as he was not impressed with the professional ranks. Team representatives returned, this time the offer had been upped to $6,000 and Kundla took the job at age 31. Kundla and the Lakers were successful. A month into the 1947–48 season, future Hall of Fame center George Mikan became available when his old team, the Chicago American Gears, folded. Outhustling the rest of the NBL and the teams of the rival Basketball Association of America, the predecessor of the National Basketball Association, the Lakers signed Mikan.
Kundla guided the George Mikan-led Lakers, which included star Jim Pollard, to the 1948 NBL title. Moving to the BAA for the 1948–49 season, which became the NBA in 1949–50, Kundla's Lakers won five NBA titles in six years, with 1951 being the only gap in the team's run, a season in which Mikan broke his ankle at the end of the campaign, thus allowing the Rochester Royals to defeat the Lakers in the Western Conference championship series three games to one; the first team to repeat as league champions became the first team to three-peat, with Mikan healed for the 1951–52, 1952–53, 1953–54 seasons. Kundla moved to the Lakers front office ahead of the 1957–58 campaign and handed off the coaching duties to Mikan, but the team's record fell to 9-30, leading Mikan to step down, forcing Kundla back to the bench, his return was not the answer either though, as the team finished 19-53, recording one of the worst seasons in its history. In 1959, knowing that the Lakers franchise was going to be moved to Los Angeles and despite having future Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor on the team, Kundla chose to stay in Minnesota and resigned from the Lakers position to coach his alma mater, the University of Minnesota.
While coaching he taught physical education at the university. He was the first Gophers coach to give scholarships to African-American players, resulting in him receiving hate mail. Kundla stayed with the Gophers for nine years before retiring from coaching after the 1967–68 season with a record of 110-105, he retired from teaching in 1981. In 1996, Kundla was voted as one of the 10 greatest coaches in the history of the NBA. In 11 years of coaching in the BAA/NBA, he had a record of 423–302 in the regular season and 60–35 in the playoffs. Kundla's 1947–48 NBL championship season team went 43–17 during the regular season with 14 more wins in the post-season, but does not count under official NBA records. Kundla was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995, after being lamented as "all but forgotten" in a 1992 USA Today column. In 1996, he was voted one of the top-10 coaches in league history for the "N. B. A. at 50" celebration. After the Los Angeles Lakers won their 2002 championship, Kundla was awarded a championship ring along with other living Minneapolis Lakers players at a ceremony at the Staples Center.
Kundla met Marie, as undergraduates. After resigning from the Lakers, he stayed close with Mikan and Vern Mikkelsen meeting his former players for breakfast. Kundla is the grandfather of former Michigan State Spartans men's basketball player, Isaiah Dahlman, former Wofford Terriers men's basketball player, Noah Dahlman, named the Southern Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year in 2009–10, his wife died in 2007. He died on July 23, 2017, twenty days after his 101st birthday. 1947-48 60 43–17.717% 1st in Western Division 10 PG 8 wins 2 losses.800% NBL champions John Kundla at Naismith Hall of Fame https://web.archive.org/web/20180705005420/http://www.hoophall.com/hall-of-famers/john-kundla/ Coaching statistics at basketball-reference.com John Kundla at Find a Grave
Orlando Henry "Tubby" Smith is an American college basketball coach. He was hired as the men's basketball coach at High Point University, his alma mater. Smith served in the same role at the University of Tulsa, the University of Georgia, the University of Kentucky, the University of Minnesota, Texas Tech University, the University of Memphis. With Kentucky, he coached the Wildcats to the 1998 NCAA championship. In his 28 years as a head coach, Smith has achieved 26 winning seasons. In 2005, he joined Roy Williams, Nolan Richardson, Denny Crum, Jim Boeheim as the only head coaches to win 365 games in 15 seasons or fewer. With Texas Tech's invitation to the 2016 NCAA Tournament, Smith became only the second coach in history to lead five different teams to the NCAA tournament. Smith's three sons are following in their father's coaching footsteps. G. G. Smith, who played for his father at the University of Georgia, was the head coach at Loyola, is the associate head coach at High Point, his middle son Saul Smith played for his father at the University of Kentucky and was an assistant coach for his father at Memphis.
Brian, his youngest son, was a point guard at Ole Miss and is the head coach at Saint John Paul II Academy in Boca Raton, Florida. Smith was born in Scotland, Maryland, in Saint Mary's County, the sixth of 17 children born to sharecroppers Guffrie and Parthenia Smith, his large family accounts for his unusual nickname. Of all the Smith children, Tubby was most fond of staying in the galvanized washtub where the children were bathed. Smith says he tried to shake the moniker several times, he recalls that a 10th grade teacher who didn't tolerate nicknames was the last person to call him by his proper name, Orlando. After having a scholarship offer from the University of Maryland rescinded, Smith enrolled at High Point College, graduating in 1973, he played under three head coaches including future boss J. D. Barnett, he was an all-conference performer as a senior. Smith earned a Bachelor of Science degree in health and physical education while at High Point, met his future wife, the homecoming queen.
In 1973, Smith began his coaching career with four years at his high school alma mater – Great Mills High School in Great Mills, compiling a 46–36 record. His next stop was Hoke County High School in Raeford, North Carolina, where he recorded a 28–18 mark in two seasons. Smith began as assistant coach at Virginia Commonwealth University under his former High Point coach J. D. Barnett. From 1979 to 1986, VCU amassed a 144 -- 64 record. Smith took two important things away from his experience as an assistant coach for the Rams. First, under Barnett, Smith learned the principles of the ball-line defense, a hallmark of Smith's teams throughout his head coaching career. Second was a relationship with fellow assistant David Hobbs, an assistant and associate head coach under Smith during his tenure at the University of Kentucky. Smith left Virginia Commonwealth in 1986 to join George Felton's staff at the University of South Carolina. Felton remembered Smith from having recruited one of his players while Smith was at Hoke High School.
During Smith's three years, the Gamecocks were 53–35. Roles would be reversed, with Smith bringing Felton in as an assistant coach at Kentucky. Smith joined the University of Kentucky under head coach Rick Pitino, who had the challenge of rebuilding a UK program, rocked by NCAA probation and player defections. With only eight scholarship student-athletes, none taller than 6–7, the staff molded the Cats into winners once again, exceeding expectations to record a 14–14 mark; the following year, with Smith promoted to associate coach and UK still on probation, the Wildcats earned a 22–6 record, a final ranking of ninth in the AP poll, an SEC-best 14–4 record. Smith wasn't the only soon-to-be high-profile name on Pitino's coaching staff at Kentucky. Future head coaches Ralph Willard, Herb Sendek, Billy Donovan, Bernadette Locke-Mattox were all Smith's colleagues. From 1991 to 1995, Smith led the Tulsa Golden Hurricane men's basketball to a 79–43 record. Rebuilding the basketball program his first two years, he led the team to two consecutive Missouri Valley Conference regular season titles and two appearances in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament in 1994 and 1995.
Smith's 1994 Tulsa team upset UCLA in the tourney's first round before knocking off Oklahoma State. In'95, the Golden Hurricane defeated Big Ten team Illinois to open March Madness. On March 29, 1995, Smith accepted the head coaching job at the University of Georgia, becoming the school's first African-American head coach. In two seasons, he led the Bulldogs to a 45–19 record, including the first back-to-back seasons of 20 wins or more in school history, his teams achieved a Sweet 16 finish in the 1996 NCAA Tournament and lost in the first round of the 1997 NCAA Tournament. The Bulldogs defeated Clemson to open the'96 tournament before upsetting the top-seeded Purdue Boilermakers. Tubby Smith was introduced as the Wildcats' 20th head coach on May 12, 1997, charged with the task of replacing popular coach Rick Pitino, who left to become the head coach of the NBA's Boston Celtics; the Wildcats were at the top of the basketball world at the time, having won a national title in 1996 and played in the national title game in 1997.
The team Smith inherited had seven players from the Arizona loss and five from the 1996 championship team. In his first season at UK, he coached the Wildcats to their seventh NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship, including a come-from-behind victory against Duke in t