Top NCAA hardwood-gridiron combos
Thursday, February 9, 2006, 9:01 p.m. ET
Since we're in the heart of the NCAA basketball season, here are my top 5 football/basketball programs:
1. Texas: Throw baseball in the mix, and the gulf between the rest widens. Mack Brown finally got his national title this fall; does Rick Barnes get his this spring?
2. Florida: Urban Meyer nearly underachieved before beating Florida State and Iowa to finish the season. Billy Donovan's group has overachieved all season and should get out of the first weekend of the NCAAs for the first time since 2000.
3. Ohio State: Once Thad Matta gets his players in Columbus (next year's recruiting class), this coaching duo could rocket to the top. Jim Tressel is proving to be a fantastic big-game coach.
4. Oklahoma: Bob Stoops, Kelvin Sampson. Two of the nation's best motivators, two of the best game day coaches. This duo dropped from the top spot over the last two years.
5. UCLA: I've been saying this from Day 1 (while every USC fan says I'm an idiot): Karl Dorrell is going to win the Pac-10 at UCLA -- sooner rather than later. Ben Howland still needs one more big recruiting class before the Bruins are a Final Four team.
Four on the rise
West Virginia: Are there two coaches doing more with less than Rich Rodriguez and John Beilein?
Arizona: Lute Olson can flat out coach and recruit. Mike Stoops is two years from his team competing for the Pac-10 title.
Georgia: Mark Richt has won two SEC titles in five years, and Dennis Felton is on the verge of finding a way to the NCAA tournament with a ragtag bunch.
Louisville: If Bob Petrino ever reaches the success of Rick Pitino, this duo finds a permanent spot in the top five.