Mountain West Basketball 2018-19 Head Coaching Rankings
Three new head coaches join the Mountain West for the 2018-19 season
Colorado State, Fresno State and Utah State welcome new head coaches
Three new head coaches will stroll Mountain West basketball sidelines this fall. Now that each of the vacancies have been filled, it’s never too early to begin our head coaching rankings for the upcoming season.
Our 2018-19 Mountain West basketball head coaching rankings are below.
Head coaching experience and win-loss records reflect Division-I college basketball stats only.
11) Justin Hutson, Fresno State
Head coaching experience: zero seasons
Career W-L record: 0-0
Previous job: San Diego State associate head coach
The only Mountain West coach without head coaching experience this upcoming season is Fresno State’s Justin Hutson. The former San Diego State associate head coach spent ten of his last 12 seasons with the Aztecs. An elite recruiter, Hutson will look to sign and develop local California talent, instilling a fast-paced, hard-nosed brand of basketball.
10) Jean Prioleau, San Jose State
Head coaching experience: one season
Career W-L record: 4-26
Previous job: Colorado assistant coach
Jean Prioleau enters his second season in San Jose with a major rebuilding project. The Spartans limped to a four-win campaign in 2018 and the climb looks even tougher this coming fall with SJSU’s top three scorers electing to transfer. The program needs to be patient with Prioleau and his staff as it was with Dave Wojcik, who eventually turned the Spartans around after a handful of tumultuous seasons.
9) Dave Pilipovich, Air Force
Head coaching experience: seven seasons
Career W-L record: 83-113
Previous job: Air Force assistant coach
I don’t blame Dave Pilipovich for anything. He’s made the most he possibly can out of what CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish called the toughest job in America back in 2016. Even so, Air Force hasn’t notched a winning season in the league since 2007, which was two head coaches ago. All the program challenges aside, one has to wonder how long the Academy will ride with Pilipovich.
8) Craig Smith, Utah State
Head coaching experience: four seasons
Career W-L record: 79-55
Previous job: South Dakota head coach
Craig Smith ushers in a new era of Utah State basketball, succeeding Tim Duryea as the new Aggies head coach. Smith brings four years of head coaching experience to Logan as he helped propel a nearly brand-new D-I program in South Dakota to 48 wins in the past two seasons. A Colorado State assistant from 2007 to 2012, Smith already has a great deal of familiarity with the conference.
7) Allen Edwards, Wyoming
Head coaching experience: two seasons
Career W-L record: 43-28
Previous job: Wyoming assistant coach
Wyoming expects to decline next season, but the first two years with Allen Edwards have been a success. The Cowboys captured the CBI championship in 2017 and followed it up with another 20-win season this past year. We’ll soon see how well Edwards can construct a roster now that Wyoming is three seasons removed from Larry Shyatt.