Ranking the SEC’s Basketball Head Coaches

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Mar 12, 2015; Nashville, TN, USA; Auburn Tigers head coach Bruce Pearl shouts during the second half of the second round game against Texas A&M Aggies of the SEC Conference Tournament at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Lindsey-USA TODAY Sports

6. Mike Anderson, Arkansas

Razorback basketball appears to be on the rise with Anderson at the helm. He has improved the program in each of his four years, reaching the NCAA Tournament in 2015.

He was an assistant coach at Arkansas for 17 years before heading to UAB for three NCAA Tournament appearances including one Sweet 16, then on to Missouri for three more including an Elite 8.

5. Bruce Pearl, Auburn

Several big splash coaching hires were made over the last few weeks in the SEC, but last year’s was Pearl. Auburn took a not-so-risky chance once his show-cause ran out to hire the former Tennessee head man.

2015 was a rough start going 15-20 (4-14), but everything about his past says he will turn the program around. In six seasons at Tennessee he went to six NCAA Tournaments including three Sweet 16s and one Elite 8. Prior to that he had plenty of success at Southern Illinois and Milwaukee including a Division II championship in 1995 at the former.

4. Rick Barnes, Tennessee

If this was a re-tread hire for UT, it may have been the best one of all time.

Texas decided to part ways with Barnes 16 NCAA Tournament appearances (including 2015) out of his 17 years in Austin. He made five Sweet 16s, two Elite 8s and the 2003 Final Four.

At 60 years old he should have a handful of quality years left to make some noise in Knoxville – a program when a ton of potential.