Today we wrap up our tournament to decide the greatest Michigan State coach in the university’s illustrious athletic history. We seeded the coaches that will be involved in this, but the readers were the ones casting their votes to decide who wins. We just wrapped up a surprising final round that saw Tom Izzo match up against Mark Dantonio.
And the winner between (5) Tom Izzo and (6) Mark Dantonio is….
(5) Tom Izzo – Basketball
After receiving over 75% of the vote in the surprising championship round, Tom Izzo was crowned the greatest coach in the history of Michigan State athletics.
It’s pretty difficult to find a greater ambassador in history for Michigan State University than Tom Izzo. The Big Ten’s longest-tenured coach when it comes to basketball, Izzo not only has the success that it takes to be mentioned among the greats like Duffy Daugherty and Ron Mason, but has the personality, especially when it comes to dealing with the media, to represent MSU as well as anyone. Izzo spent two seasons in the NIT before making the tournament 19 straight times. Of those 19 appearances, he went to seven Final Fours and won one national title. Throughout his 21 seasons at the helm, he won seven Big Ten Championships and five Big Ten Tournament Championships. Only George Denman and Chester Brewer have higher overall winning percentages than Izzo, but no one has a better conference record than MSU’s current coach. In fact, by winning 68.9% of his Big Ten games, his conference winning percentage is over 10% better than second place (John Bennington won 57.1% of his conference games). His 524 wins overall is also the best mark in school history. Earlier this year, it was announced that Izzo will be joining the all-time greats in the Naismith Hall of Fame.
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