With at least four ACC basketball coaches in some degree of trouble -- Florida State’s Leonard Hamilton, Maryland’s Gary Williams, N.C. State’s Sidney Lowe and Virginia’s Dave Leitao -- entering the final month or so of the season, here are seven potential hiring candidates that ACC athletic directors would be smart to scout:
Mike Brey, Notre Dame: The guy is just too solid for the ACC to keep passing on. If you can win 20 games in South Bend, where it’s difficult to get anyone through the admissions office, you can win 22-23 in the ACC.
Brad Brownell, Wright State: At age 40, the former UNC-Wilmington coach has the perfect blend of experience and youth to become the right fit for the next 20-25 years in the ACC.
Jeff Capel, Oklahoma: The ACC missed far and wide on Capel when he left Virginia Commonwealth for Oklahoma. Now, it’s going to be expensive to correct that mistake. Even so, Oklahoma is a football school and the ACC still is a basketball league. That equates to easy math.Anthony Grant, Virginia Commonwealth: Florida’s loss will be someone else’s gain. In only his third season with the Rams, Grant already has established that he can recruit on the margin and implement effective in-game strategy.
Brian Gregory, Dayton: At 6-1 in the Atlantic-10 and 20-2 overall, it’s obvious that Gregory is still on the up-tick. And like most A-10 coaches, he’s affordable.
Sean Miller, Xavier: It’s just a matter of time before Miller gets picked off by the ACC, Big East or Big 10. At 7-0 in the Atlantic-10 and 19-2 overall, the Musketeers are again heading toward a top-20 NCAA seed.
Bob McKillop, Davidson: Even at age 58, McKillop is still an undiscovered diamond in the coaching rough. He was winning with regularity at Davidson long before Stephen Curry came along. No one runs a cleaner program, or recruits with more specificity.
-- Caulton Tudor, (Raleigh) News & Observer