By our crack staff... I'm surprised that for the most part we pretty much agree where the coaches stand in the SEC. Pelphrey at the bottom, Grant lower 1/2, Stallings top 1/4.
1) Cal - good first year, but where there's smoke....
2) Pearl - plays a "fun" style which can occasionally still get it done. Still don't like the guy tho
3) Stallings - does alot without the Demarcus Cousins, etc. of the world
4) Donovan - definitely would not have been this low a couple of years ago, but has been a victim of his own doings with the Orlando job and assistant turnover.
5) Kennedy - Is this the year he finally gets them to play as strong as Rob Evans' Ole Miss teams?
6) Fox - I really thought Auburn might try to get him. Bobby's right, UGA needs to hold onto him like grim death.
7) $tansbury - the Bill Clinton "soundalike" had a subpar year to his standards.
8) Grant - I think we have a good coach, but not-so-great on the PR side. It's bad when Barbee has been more newsworthy for the Aub's decrepit program...
9) Johnson - looks like last year may have been a blip on the screen. This year is obviously crucial to our perception of him.
10) Horn - with Parnell gone at Clemson, can Horn elevate SC's program a bit. Still too early to tell.
11) Pelphrey - Arkansas' hoops program is like Alabama's football program. If you have the right coach, then it is a GREAT vehicle to win in. Pelphrey is not the guy....
1) Cal- Moreso for his recruiting than actual in game coaching.
2) Pearl- Classless nutjob, but he’s a winner.
3) Donovan- has faded some since the Championships, but still a good combination of coaching and recruiting.
4) Kennedy- He has old piss relevant again in the SEC West, which is an accomplishment.
5) Stallings- Maybe the best X’s and O’s coach in the conference.
6) Fox- If we do this again in a few years, I suspect he will be higher, assuming he doesn’t leave for greener pastures
7) Grant- Still unproven. Teams play hard, but questions remain about can he recruit and win at this level.
8)$tansbury- Sleaze bag who should do more with the amount of talent he buys on a yearly basis.
9) Horn- Decent coach, but for some reason it’s impossible to recruit to South Carolina
10)Pelphrey- Arkansas clearly picked the wrong former Kentucky player, this guy is no Travis Ford.
11) Johnson- That team should not have been THAT bad last year, and on paper they may be even worse this year.
*Note: Based solely on recruiting thus far, I would put Barbee ahead of Grant and behind Fox. Of course, much like Grant, it remains to be seen what he can do on the court at this level
1) Cal- dirty as hell, but effective
2) Pearl- puts his team in position to win more times than not regardless of talent swing
3) Stallings- it's Vandy and he's been consistent there
4) Donovan- living off the B2B NCs... still in the top 25% in the conference
5) $tansbury- as dirty as Cal... not as successful.
6) Fox- I think UGA found them a gem... they better hold on tight.
7) Kennedy- his problem is his teams fade in February.
8) Johnson- inherited a lot his first year... down year last season, but played hard at the end.
9) Grant- I'm not sold on him yet... but we play hellacious D.
10) Pelphrey- the shine is gone... and I'm not sure what kind of a team he's trying to field.
11) Horn- more a result of where he is. He's the Lebo of South Carolina.
Msmilie (he put in Barbee to make it 12)
1] Bruce Pearl - He really impressed me last season with his ability to keep his team motivated and hungry after the suspensions that resulted in Tyler Smith being dismissed. The team responded and had a great run to the Elite Eight. If Pearl remains in Knoxville, he may just bring home a national championship for the men's program.
2] Billy Donovan - Recruiting has been up and down since the national championship teams, but it's hard to argue with what Donovan has accomplished during his time in Gainesville.
3] John Calipari - His coaching acumen has a tendency to be overlooked due to his repeated brushes with the NCAA and the uncanny amounts of talent he recruits on a yearly basis. He's won every place he's been and will win multiple national championships at UK if the NBA or NCAA doesn't get him first.
4] Kevin Stallings - I'm not sure if Kevin Stallings has received his due for the job he's done in Nashville. Vanderbilt had success before he arrived, but not with the consistency exhibited under Stallings. His teams have had a tendency to burn out in March, but he was also one missed traveling call away from going to the Final Four a few years back.
5] Rick Stansbury - Say what you will about the guy but he's kept Mississippi State relevant during his tenure there. His only drawback is he hasn't been able to get past the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament and he has a tendency to recruit guys with one eye on the pros from day one, resulting in a string early defections and rebuilding.
6] Trent Johnson - Won at Nevada, won at Stanford, and has shown if he has talent he can win at LSU. The lingering question is whether he will be able to recruit the necessary talent to bring LSU back to the level of that first team?
7] Anthony Grant - Still has to prove himself at this level, but there is no denying he got maximum effort last season out of a team that had been notorious for lack of effort prior to his arrival. His tenure at VCU proved he's capable of beating anyone (ask Mike Krzyzewski), but he faces a continuing rebuilding job in Tuscaloosa. His team's play over the next two seasons will determine his place on this list as well as his coaching future.
8] Tony Barbee - His knack for recruiting alone gives him a chance. Took advantage of a weak C-USA (translation: Memphis was rebuilding) this season to win the title and make the tournament. He must have a little more success before I move him up the list.
9] Mark Fox - Won at Nevada, but must prove he can get it done long-term after Thompkins and Leslie (probably) move on to the NBA next season. The jury is still out.
10] Andy Kennedy - It's hard to place him very high until he coaches in an NCAA tournament game, but he's done a solid job recruiting and his teams have been competitive for the most part.
11] Darrin Horn - Horn is recruiting very well. If he's got the coaching chops and Carolina fans are patient, he could prove to be a great hire down the road apiece.
12] John Pelphrey - This picture pretty much sums up Pelphrey's tenure in Fayetteville so far (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_ss8vG4tFASk/SgqLYLryljI/AAAAAAAAC_g/3FRwasgZE8A/s400/JOHN-PELPHREY-01.jpg). People criticized Stan Heath, but I don't think anyone can argue the program was in better shape when Heath was unceremoniously fired after back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances. Pelphrey's lone tournament appearance with the Razorbacks was accomplished with players recruited by Heath. Pelphrey has, at most, two years to get things turned around or he will be hitting the bricks. Just as the East needs Kentucky to be relevant, so too does the West need Arkansas back to strength in order to bolster its image within the conference.