Nothing inspires a player more than a coach does and should, and in the long history of the well-loved game of basketball, these coaches have done their jobs well enough to deserve accolade. Here are some of the coaches who impacted basketball history:
- Philip Douglas Jackson. Who doesn’t know him, seriously? Whether you are a seasoned NBA fan or just a curious observer on the courtside, you may have heard his name in passing. He started out his career in basketball as a professional player for the New York Knicks in 1967, then later on with the New Jersey Nets in the late 70s before retiring from professional play in 1980. He became assistant coach for the Chicago Bulls in 1987 and subsequently became its head coach in 1989. He successfully used a play known as the triangle offense while taking on a holistic, zen-style approach to coaching and eventually led the Bulls to six NBA titles, and later the Los Angeles Lakers to three. Heís been inducted to the Hall of Fame and is among the 10 greatest coaches in NBA history.
- Justin McCarthy “Sam” Barry. Now this was a coach who had not only impacted his own history in the game, but also the game itself. Heís an innovator who had lent a hand in refining the rules of basketball, as well as developing the earliest form of the triangle offense made famous by the Chicago Bulls under Phil Jackson and Tex Winter. He was responsible for the following changes in the rules of the game: (1) Eliminating the jump ball after every goal, and (2) creating the center line and the 10-second rule. He holds the record for the longest winning streak in the whole history of collegiate basketball with 40 consecutive wins against UCLA.
- James A. Naismith. He was one of the coaches who impacted basketball history, even more so than any other since heís responsible for creating this well-loved sport in the first place. He developed the game in response to an order given by the head of the Springfield YMCA Physical Education Department to keep a class of irritable teenagers preoccupied indoors during the harsh winter. He developed the original 13 basic rules of the game, which has since then been refined to what we know as basketball today. He became the first college basketball coach for the University of Kansas in 1898.
- Robert Montgomery “Bob” Knight. He is the most successful and most controversial head coach in college basketball, aptly nicknamed “The General”. He won the most number of basketball games in the NCAA Menís Division with a total of 902 wins. He refined Hank Iba’s motion offense play and used his own version in his rally for victories in 40 years of coaching college basketball. His motion offense teaches players to be disciplined and unselfish in setting up and utilizing screens to open space for a pass. He received the first Naismith Men’s College Coach of the Year Award in 1987.
There are a lot of other names that can be included in a list of coaches who impacted basketball history, and even more are rising among the ranks.