Tubby Smith Named Sporting News Coach of the Year
After being selected Big 12 Coach of the Year, Texas Tech men's basketball coach Tubby Smith was named Sporting News National Coach of the Year.
This is Smith's eighth National Coach of the Year award. In 2003, he was the consensus National Coach of the Year. Smith is the first men's basketball to win a National Coach of the Year. Marsha Sharp was the 1993 National Coach of the year.
The Red Raiders finished with a 19-11 record and a 9-9 Big 12 mark in the regular season, all while facing the toughest schedule in the nation's no. 1-rated RPI rated conference. The team also beat three top 25 teams in a row, which was a first for the program.
Smith also has the Red Raiders primed to make a trip to the NCAA Tournament. The first time since 2006-2007. Selection Sunday is this Sunday, March 13.
The Sporting News talked to Bob Huggins about the accolade.
"I knew when I saw on the ticker that they hired Tubby Smith here that they wanted to win, because that guy is a winner, he does a great job of bench coaching," said Huggins. "They recruit good players. They’ve got good players. That’s the problem with this league. There are too many good players on a team, and there’s too many good coaches sitting there. You know, you can’t outsmart anybody."
That's high praise from a colleague, but after two unceremonious endings to jobs in a row in Kentucky and Minnesota, Tubby Smith wasn't sure he wanted to take another job.
After thinking a year off would be good, he got a phone call from Kirby Hocutt. After meeting with Texas Tech, Smith asked his wife Donna what she thought of the offer.
"She said, 'We’re probably set for the rest of our lives. Our kids, they’re probably set for their lives. Our family’s probably set until our grandkids,'" Smith told Sporting News. "Then she said, 'Don’t forget the great-grandkids. Get your ass back to work.'"
Texas Tech is sure glad he took Donna's advice.