With Kansas State on the doorstep of the Final Four, I had a thought about its past coaches. Consider that in the last 30 years, K-State fans have watched four former coaches lead non-traditional powers to the Final Four - Lon Kruger at Florida, Bob Huggins at West Virginia, Dana Altman at Oregon and Frank Martin at South Carolina.
If K-State beats Loyola on Sunday, five of its past seven coaches will have been in the Final Four this decade. If West Virginia advances out of its bracket, all of five will have made it to the Final Four since 2015. That is a pretty incredible run of hires.
K State had a good coach and a good program when Eddie Sutton and the Hogs played them in the 70’s, but I can’t recall his name. We were on a roll with Sutton and Richardson and then it all came to a halt. Jack Hartman, maybe?
Kansas State under Coach Hartman was a real thorn in the side to Sutton at Arkansas. I seem to remember us losing something like five out of six games to them at one point during the Sutton years, including in the NCAA Tournament. Sutton and Hartman both were from the Henry Iba tree of coaching.
For a guy like Moser, the real test begins when he lands in a better league and can he do the same. It is a lot easier to do that at a mid-major and surprise some teams, but harder to continue that. Some coaches like Heath don’t get there again or further. And then there are some coaches like Mike Anderson who do succeed at a higher level like Missouri.
Beard has done that. Let’s see if he can keep it up.
Darn, I wish Mike had stayed at Missouri. He could have had a much better resume right now. I wish he had not got caught into the emotion of coming home. Major mistake.