Michigan basketball coach John Beilein ranked No. 18 on Athlon's top coaches list, Tom Izzo No. 1
Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com
Beilein made Athlonsports.com's list of the country's top college basketball coaches, coming in at No. 18 overall.
"He’s one of eight coaches and four active coaches to take four teams to the NCAA Tournament (Canisius, Richmond, West Virginia, Michigan)," the site wrote. "At each of those stops, Beilein pulled the program out of an extended rough patch.
"While he doesn’t have a national championship like (Tom) Izzo, an extended track Big Ten track record like (Bo) Ryan, and Final Fours like (Thad) Matta and (Tom) Crean, an argument could be made he deserves to be at or near the top of any Big Ten coach rankings."
Athlon justifies its ranking of Beilein among the nation's elite based on the fact that he's the only active coach with a 20-win season at the junior college, NAIA, Division II and Division I level.
Also, he's never been an assistant coach -- meaning he's had to find his own way without a ton of high-level mentors.
Beilein has earned Athlon's respect, but not as much as his counterpart in East Lansing.
Izzo was named the top overall coach in the country by the site, followed by Duke's Mike Krzyzewski and Kentucky's John Calipari.
Other Big Ten coaches on the list were Bo Ryan (No. 9), Thad Matta (No. 14), Tom Crean (No. 17) and Matt Painter (No. 24).