Beilein during the 2013 NCAA Tournament
February 5, 1953 |
Burt, New York
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Newfane HS (NY)
|Head coaching record|
75–43 (junior college)
|Accomplishments and honors|
MCC Regular Season Championship (1988)
MCC Tournament Championship (1988)
MAAC Regular Season Championship (1994)
MAAC Tournament Championship (1996)
CAA Tournament Championship (1998)
CAA Regular Season Championship (2001)
NIT Championship (2007)
Big Ten Regular Season Championship (2012)
NCAA Regional Championship (2013)
John Beilein (pronounced bee-line; born February 5, 1953) is an American college basketball coach and current men's basketball head coach at the University of Michigan. He is the 16th head coach of the Michigan Wolverines. The 2012–13 season is his sixth at Michigan, with whom he has a six-year contract. Beilein has won 598 career games at four-year universities (including games that were not at the Division I level) and 672 games altogether, including those at the junior-college level. He has previously coached the West Virginia Mountaineers (2002–2007), Richmond Spiders (1997–2002), Canisius College Golden Griffins (1992–1997) in Division I as well as Le Moyne College (1983–1992), Nazareth College (1982–1983) and Erie Community College (1978–1982).
Beilein is the only active collegiate coach to have achieved 20-win seasons at four different levels—junior college, NAIA, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division I. He has been recognized as Coach of the Year four times: in 1981 at Erie Community College, in 1988 at LeMoyne, in 1994 at Canisius, and in 1998 at Richmond. In addition, Beilein was the seventh of only eight coaches in history (along with Lefty Driesell, Jim Harrick, Lon Kruger, Rick Pitino, Tubby Smith, Eddie Sutton and later Tom Penders) to have taken four different schools to the NCAA Division I Tournament.
Beilein's first Division I head coaching position was at Canisius, a hometown school of which he had been a fan. He turned around the school's losing program and helped it earn two National Invitation Tournament (NIT) and one NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship Tournament invitation in five years. Then at Richmond he reached the NIT twice in five years. In five years at West Virginia, his teams twice advanced several rounds in the NCAA tournament and twice went to the NIT, including one championship. At Michigan, the school reached the NCAA tournament for the first time in over a decade. He has a 13–6 record in the NIT and a 13–7 record in the NCAA tournament, with one Final Four appearance.
Beilein was raised in Burt, New York. He is the eighth of nine children of a millworker and an apple farmer. His mother's cousins were the inspiration for Saving Private Ryan and two of his uncles (Tom and Joe Niland) were lifelong basketball coaches in the Western New York area. Beilein attended DeSales High School in Lockport, New York. He went on to attend Wheeling College (now Wheeling Jesuit University) where he competed on the school's basketball team from 1971 to 1975 and served as team captain during the 1974–75 season. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history in 1975. After graduating, Beilein returned to Western New York where he began his coaching career at Newfane High School in 1975. He remained there for three years. Beilein went on to earn a Master of Science degree in education from Niagara University in 1981.
Early college coaching career
Beilein has never served as an assistant coach; he has held head-coaching positions throughout his career. He served as the coach of Erie Community College from 1978 to 1982, Western New York's Division III Nazareth College in Rochester, New York for the 1982–1983 school year, and Le Moyne College from 1983 to 1992. Le Moyne was a Division II contestant in the Mideast Collegiate Conference (MCC). Beilein first applied to coach Division I basketball at Canisius in 1987, but he was not hired. During his time at Le Moyne, he held annual coaching clinics that welcomed coaches and athletes. Beilein was named the 1988 MCC Coach of the Year, when his team finished as Co-League Champions with a 21–5 regular season record and number 14 national ranking. The team tied with Gannon University with an 8–2 conference record. Although it was Beilein's third 20-win team at Le Moyne, they had never gone to the NCAA tournament before. The team captured the conference post-season tournament after receiving a first round bye. As the number three seed, they faced the number one seeded California University of Pennsylvania in the NCAA Division II Eastern Regionals. They lost their first round game to fall to a 23–6 record, but won the consolation game against Kutztown University of Pennsylvania.
The MCC disbanded following the 1990–1991 season. In Beilein's final season at Le Moyne, the team was an independent team unaffiliated with a conference. The team was scheduled to join the New England Collegiate Conference for the 1992–1993 season. After his first application for the job at Canisius, Beilein had tried to land other Division I jobs at schools such as Colgate University, where he had been a finalist in 1989. In 1992, he was finally hired to a Division I post at Canisius.
NCAA Division I coaching career
During the 1991–92 season, Canisius compiled an 8–22 record prior to Beilein's arrival. In 1992, Beilein arrived at Canisius College as head coach for the 1992–93 season, and was able for the first time to hire assistant coaches. A Western New York native, he had grown up a Canisius basketball fan because his uncle, Joe Niland, had been a former player and coach there. At Canisius—his first Division I coaching position—Beilein reached the NCAA Tournament once and the NIT twice in his five seasons.
In his first two seasons at Canisius, Beilein turned a last place 1991–92 squad into a 1993–94 team that recorded the first undefeated home schedule (15–0) in the school's modern era. The team entered the 1994 MAAC Tournament on a 15-game winning streak, and Beilein earned Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Coach of the Year. Beilein's number one seeded Canisius team lost in the second round semi-final contest against Loyola University and thus failed to make the 1994 NCAA Tournament. Although Canisius failed to be invited to participate in the NCAA tournament, Canisius was invited, along with two other schools from the MAAC, to the NIT tournament, and it was matched up against a taller, more experienced Villanova team. The eventual 1994 NIT champion Villanova prevailed in a 103–79 victory over Canisius in the first round.
During the 1994–95 season, the Golden Griffins were led by the team's first MAAC Player of the Year, senior Craig Wise. In the first round of the MAAC tournament, a pair of future Michigan Wolverine coaches opposed each other when Canisius met Loyola, coached by Brian Ellerbe. Canisius won and reached the MAAC semi-final for the fifth time in six years. The team lost in the semis for the third straight season, and it continued its record of never having won the conference tournament. Canisius earned the team's first post-season victory in 32 years against Seton Hall. A pair of subsequent wins enabled Canisius to earn a trip to the semifinals of the 1995 NIT at Madison Square Garden. Canisius lost in the semifinals against Virginia Tech by a 71–59 despite a school postseason record 32 points from Wise. Canisius lost the consolation game against Penn State. The three wins and two losses enabled Beilein to even up his NIT career record at 3–3.
In 1995–96, the team also was led by a MAAC Player of the Year, Darrell Barley. Beilein coached the 16–10 (7–7 MAAC) team to the conference tournament championship to earn a birth in the 1996 NCAA Tournament despite the absence of the injured Barley for the tournament. Canisius earned a thirteen seed and matchup against the fourth-seeded Utah Utes in the team's first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1957. Utah defeated Canisius in the game, 72–43.
In Beilein's final season coaching Canisius, the Golden Griffins were the top defensive team in the MAAC. The team's season ended in the conference tournament finals. After the 1996–97 season, Beilein interviewed with the University of Richmond.
In 1997, Beilein moved to become the coach of the Richmond Spiders. There, he compiled a 100–53 record in five seasons, recording a winning record each season, and again reached the NCAA tournament once, where his 14th-seeded team upset third-seeded and nationally ranked South Carolina. His teams also reached the NIT twice.
During the 1997–98 season, A third Beilein player was named conference player of the year in six seasons when Jarod Stevenson was named Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Player of the Year. The 1997–98 Spiders posted its first winning season since 1993. The Spiders entered the 1998 CAA tournament as the third seed in the nine-team conference. The team won the tournament, earning the school a 1998 NCAA Tournament selection, its first NCAA tournament berth since 1991. Beilein won his fourth Coach of the Year award that season. This one was for the Richmond Times-Dispatch Virginia Coach of the Year. Beilein was selected for the award over Charlie Woollum of William and Mary who beat Beilein for the CAA coach of the year award. During the NCAA Tournament, Richmond, which was seeded 14th upset the South Carolina team in the first round of the tournament. The Spiders lost their second game in the tournament to the Washington Huskies team. Beilein's career NCAA tournament record was 1–2.
Beilein relied on a nucleus that included two freshmen and two sophomores after two returning starters were removed from the team for disciplinary reason during the 1998–99 season. The team finished third in the CAA with a 15–11 (10–6 CAA) record. However, they were upset in the 1999 CAA conference tournament by sixth-seeded cross-town rival Virginia Commonwealth.
Richmond again earned the third seed in the conference tournament over the course of the 1999–2000 season. In the 2000 CAA Conference tournament they ousted number-six Old Dominion and number-two James Madison. Then with the CAA conference's automatic bid to the 2000 NCAA Tournament at stake, Richmond lost to fourth seeded UNC Wilmington in the championship game.
During the 2000–01 season, Richmond finished the regular season with a 21–6 record, finishing first in the CAA with a 12–4 record. The Spiders won ten of their final eleven games. However, since Richmond was going to change its athletic affiliation from the CAA to the Atlantic 10 the following season, it was ineligible for the 2001 CAA conference tournament. Only one team from the CAA had ever earned an at large bid to the NCAA tournament. The Spiders wound up playing in the 2001 NIT, where they defeated West Virginia before losing to Dayton. With one win and one loss Beilein stayed at .500 in the NIT, at 4–4. At the end of the season, Beilein declined an offer to coach at Rutgers.
The following year during the 2001–02 season, Richmond finished in second place of the West Division of the 12-team Atlantic 10 Conference to earn a first-round bye in the 2002 Atlantic 10 Tournament. In the tournament Richmond won its first two games to advance to the finals where it lost to Xavier. During the 2002 NIT, Richmond defeated Wagner, Montana State, and Minnesota before losing to Syracuse in the quarterfinals. This improved Beilein's record to 7–5 in the NIT.
In April 2002, Beilein accepted the head coaching position at West Virginia (WVU) of the Big East Conference. At WVU he posted a 104–60 record over five seasons. In the 2004–05 season, WVU went 24–11 and reached the "Elite Eight" (fourth round) of the NCAA tournament. The following year, WVU went 22–11 and reached the "Sweet Sixteen" (third round). In 2006–07, Beilein's Mountaineers, despite losing about 80% of their scoring from the previous season, went 27–9 and won the NIT championship.
Prior to 2009, the Big East Tournament only included the top 12 teams. During the 2002–03 season, West Virginia qualified for the tournament in their final conference game of the season by beating Virginia Tech team to secure 6th place in the western division. The team had improved from 8–20 to finish the regular season at 14–14 (5–11 Big East) under Beilein. The team lost in the first round of the 2003 Big East Tournament to Providence by a 73–50 margin to end their season.
Following the 2003–04 regular season, West Virginia qualified for the 2004 Big East Tournament as the number 10 seed. The team lost its first round match against Notre Dame team by a 65–64 margin on a three-point shot with 15 seconds remaining. The team's 15–13 record earned it an invitation to the 2004 NIT. In the first round of the tournament, the team traveled to play a 22–8 Kent State. Despite early foul trouble the team won 65–54 to advance to the second round. West Virginia defeated Rhode Island in the second game of the tournament by a 79–72 margin. The season ended with a 74–53 loss to Rutgers in the following game. Beilein's career record in the NIT tournament was 8–6 after this tournament.
In 2004–05, Beilein's team entered the 2005 Big East Tournament with a 18–9 record as the eighth seed and as a team on the bubble for the 2005 NCAA Tournament. The team won its opening-round game against number nine seed Providence 82–59, its second-round game against number one seed Boston College 78–72, and its third-round game against number four Villanova 78–72. West Virginia lost the conference tournament finals to Syracuse 68–59, but it earned a seven seed in the NCAA tournament against number ten seed Creighton of the Missouri Valley Conference. The loss gave Beilein his fifth loss in as many games against his mentor Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, who had helped him acquire each of his first three Division I coaching positions. In the NCAA tournament, West Virginia beat Creighton 63–61 with a defensive stop and fast break dunk in the final five seconds. West Virginia then defeated the number two seed Wake Forest team led by Chris Paul in double overtime 111–105. In the Sweet Sixteen round, West Virginia defeated Bobby Knight's number six seeded Texas Tech 65–60. In the elite eight round, they lost in overtime to Rick Pitino's number four seeded Louisville, who were led by Taquan Dean and Larry O'Bannon 93–85. with the three wins Beilein raised his career NCAA record to 4–3.
During the 2005–06 season, West Virginia won its first eight Big East conference games and entered the top ten in the 2005–06 national rankings in February. It was the first time West Virginia had ranked in the top ten in the Coaches' Poll which had been created in 1993. They were the final unbeaten team in conference play. After the good start, the team lost four of its next five games to fall to 9–4 in conference play. They won their next two games to clinch a first-round bye in the 2006 Big East Tournament. With seemingly little to play for, they lost their regular season finale to finish with a 20–9 (11–5 Big East) regular season record. West Virginia lost its quarterfinal round game in the conference tournament to Pitt, and it earned a number six seed in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. West Virginia won its opening weekend games against number eleven seed Southern Illinois team and the number fourteen seed Northwestern State Demons basketball team by 64–46 and 67–54 margins, respectively. The team then West Virginia lost in the Sweet Sixteen round to the number two seed Texas Longhorns in a wild finish that saw West Virginia erase a five-point deficit in the final fourteen seconds only to lose the game on a buzzerbeater. The two wins helped Beilein raise his NCAA tournament record to 6–4.
During the 2006–07 season, WVU finished the regular season with a 21–8 (9–7 Big East) record to earn the number seven seed in the 2007 Big East Tournament. In the first round of the tournament, they defeated the number ten seed Providence 92–79 making a Big East Tournament record 17 three-point shots. They lost to the second-seeded Louisville Cardinals, 82–71, in double overtime. Their 22–9 record earned them a top seed in the 32-team 2007 NIT. As the number one seed, West Virginia was able to play its first three games at home where it defeated the Delaware State Hornets 74–50, UMass team 90–77, and NC State 71–60. Before West Virginia started play in the semifinals in New York, rumors started that Beilein would take the Michigan job after the season ended. In the semifinal contest against Mississippi State, they won 63–62 on a last-minute shot by Darris Nichols after recovering from a 14-point second-half deficit. The day before the championship game, Beilein was announced as one of three finalists (along with Kevin Stallings and Chris Lowery) for the Michigan Wolverines' head coaching job. In the championship game, WVU defeated Clemson 78–73. The five wins raised Beilein's NIT career record to 13–6.
On April 3, 2007, the University of Michigan announced that it had hired Beilein to fill its coaching vacancy. He replaced Tommy Amaker, who was fired after failing to reach the NCAA Tournament in his six seasons. Beilein inherited a Big Ten Conference team that was in the final year of a scholarship reduction due to the involvement of former players in the Ed Martin scandal, in which NCAA rules had been violated. The team struggled to a 10–22 (5–13) record during the 2007–08 season.
During the 2008–09 season, Beilein's second at Michigan, the 2008–09 Wolverines enjoyed several important victories. On November 20, the unranked Wolverines upset #4-ranked UCLA, recording their first win over a top-five team in eleven years. On December 6, Michigan posted its second win of the season over a top-five opponent in a rematch against #4 ranked Duke. The Wolverines reached the top 25 in the national rankings on December 22, its first appearance since the February 6, 2006. On February 26, Michigan defeated the #16-ranked Purdue team 87–78, raising its record to 3–4 against ranked opponents on the season. At the conclusion of the 2008–09 Big Ten season, Michigan was given a seven seed in the 2009 Big Ten Tournament. A win over Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament on March 12 was the Wolverines' twentieth of the season. With that win, Beilein had achieved a 20-win season at seven different schools, including four at the Division I level (Canisius, Richmond, West Virginia, Michigan). Three days later, Beilein's Wolverines earned a bid to the 2009 NCAA Tournament, the school's first appearance in 11 years. There, tenth-seeded Michigan defeated the seventh-seeded Clemson Tigers 62–59 in the first round of the South Regional on March 19. In the second round, Michigan lost to the Oklahoma Sooners 73–63.
During the 2009–10 season, Michigan earned its first win against a ranked non-conference opponent and its second consecutive win against a ranked opponent on January 17 when it defeated #15 Connecticut. Beilein signed a contract extension in January, extending his original contract to 2016. Michigan finished 15–17 and did not appear in the postseason.
The 2010–11 team, which did not have a senior on the roster, was not expected to be very successful, projected by the Detroit News to finish 10th in the 11-team conference. After starting the conference schedule with a 1–6 record the team won eight of its last 11 games, including two games against Michigan State (its first season sweep against them in 14 years), to finish tied for fourth in the conference with a 9–9 record.The victory at Michigan State was Michigan's first since 1997. In the Big Ten Tournament, Michigan's win over Illinois gave Beilein his second 20-win season at Michigan, in his 1,000th game as a head coach. As a #8 seed in the 2011 NCAA Tournament, Michigan defeated Tennessee 75–45, establishing two NCAA Tournament records: the largest victory margin by an eight seed, and becoming the first team to ever win a tournament game without making a free throw. Michigan won by its third-largest margin in its NCAA tournament history (second-most if vacated games are excluded), and the game marked the ninth straight time that John Beilein led a team victory in its first game of a postseason tournament (5 NCAA and 4 NIT). In the next round the Wolverines lost to #1-seeded Duke, 73–71, missing a potential game-tying shot in the final seconds.
The 2011–12 Wolverines began the season ranked in the top 25, and remained there all season. The team recorded a win over 9th-ranked Michigan State on Jan. 17, 60–59. It was Beilein's third consecutive win over the Spartans and came nine days after Beilein recorded his first victory over Wisconsin, 59–41. On February 18, the Wolverines defeated another top-10 opponent, edging 6th-ranked Ohio State, 56–51. The win clinched Beilein's first winning record in Big Ten play. On March 1, Michigan won at Illinois for the first time since 1995, ending a 13-game losing streak in Champaign. The Wolverines finished 24–10 overall and 13–5 in Big Ten play, winning a share of the regular-season Big Ten championship for the first time since the 1985–86 team.
By helming the 2012–13 Wolverines, Beilein reached his sixth season with the same team for the first time. Beilein achieved several milestones with the 2012–13 Wolverines: 650th win as a college basketball head coach (December 4 vs. Western Michigan), 100th win as head coach at Michigan (December 8 vs. Arkansas), 400th Division I win as a head coach (January 9 vs. Nebraska) and his best career start (December 15 vs. West Virginia). The 400th win came on a night when Michigan achieved its 16th straight victory which tied the school record for best start. Michigan went on to record its first 19–1 start to a season in school history.On January 28, Michigan was ranked number one in the AP Poll with 51 of the 65 first place votes. It marked the first time Michigan ranked atop the AP Poll since the 1992–93 team did so on December 5, 1992. John Beilein was selected as an assistant coach for the 2013 World University Games. In the 2013 NCAA Tournament, fourth-seeded Michigan defeated South Dakota State, 71–56. in its South Regional opening game, and in so doing the team matched Beilein's career high with 27 wins. Michigan then surpassed this record, and continued to advance, by defeating fifth-seeded Virginia Commonwealth, 78-53 and top-seeded Kansas, 87-85 before beating third-seeded Florida 79-59 to send Michigan to the Final Four for the first time since 1993.  In the 2013 Final Four, the Wolverines defeated East region champion Syracuse, 61-56, to advance to the national championship game against Louisville, which they lost, 82-76. During the following offseason, Bleacher Report named Beilein the most creative coach in college basketball. During the offseason, Beilein signed a second contract extension through the 2018–19 season.
Beilein is known for his offensive system, which emphasizes constant motion, passing, back-door cuts, disciplined teamwork, and precision shooting. The offense usually starts out with four players outside the three-point arc, and one player at the top of the key (though at times a post player may operate closer to the basket). From this formation, Beilein's teams not only try to open up space for players to cut to the basket, but also are known for their high number of three-point attempts. On defense, Beilen has become known for employing the 1–3–1 halfcourt zone defense, which is considered to be an unconventional zone defense – though he also regularly employs man-to-man and 2-3 zone defenses.
As of 2013[update], Beilein has been married to Kathleen Beilein for 35 years. He remains in close contact with his eight siblings, especially his sister Molly Maigret, who regularly attends home games in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Beileins have three sons (Patrick, who played for his father at WVU; Mark, a former football player at Richmond and WVU grad; and Andy, who is enrolled in the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan) and a daughter (Seana Hendricks). Patrick, who was the 2002 Virginia Independent Schools Division I Player of the Year, had intended to play at Richmond with his father, and instead went to West Virginia when his father moved there. Patrick was a 2008–2009 season graduate assistant coach at University of Michigan. He has since held posts as assistant coach at Dartmouth and, most recently, Director of Men's Basketball Operations at Bradley University. He now serves as the Head Coach of West Virginia Wesleyan College, a NCAA Division II school in Buckhannon, WV.
When Patrick was a highly recruited high school basketball player, John was restricted by NCAA rules from some normal behaviors regarding his son, such as giving his son's teammates a ride home from practice, talking with his son at a basketball camp or discussing his son's abilities with news media, because the interactions of college coaches with recruits are restricted. The relevant NCAA rules for recruiting (Bylaw article 13) are quite extensive. Beilein had to follow recruiting rules when visiting his son at a basketball camp. According to rule 188.8.131.52 coaches wishing to attend a camp as observers must comply with appropriate recruiting contact and evaluation periods. According to 13.02.3, a contact includes any face-to-face encounter between a prospective student-athlete . . . and an institutional staff member or athletics representative during which any dialogue occurs in excess of an exchange of a greeting. In short, talking to coaches not employed by a camp is not allowed during the camp, which left Beilein unable to offer his son milk money.
Head coaching record
|Erie Community College () (1978–1982)|
|Erie C.C.:||75–43 (.636)|
National champion Conference regular season champion Conference tournament champion
(Record updated as of November 24, 2013)
|Nazareth Golden Flyers () (1982–1983)|
|Le Moyne Dolphins (Mideast Collegiate Conference) (1983–1991)|
|1987–1988||Le Moyne||24–6||8–2||T–1st||NCAA DII First Round|
|Le Moyne Dolphins (Independent) (1991–1992)|
|Le Moyne:||163–94 (.634)|
|Canisius Golden Griffins (Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference) (1992–1997)|
|1993–1994||Canisius||22–7||12–2||1st||NIT First Round|
|1995–1996||Canisius||19–11||7–7||5th||NCAA First Round|
|Canisius:||89–62 (.589)||44–26 (.629)|
|Richmond Spiders (Colonial Athletic Association) (1997–2001)|
|1997–1998||Richmond||23–8||12–4||3rd||NCAA Second Round|
|2000–2001||Richmond||22–7||12–4||1st||NIT Second Round|
|Richmond Spiders (Atlantic 10 Conference) (2001–2002)|
|Richmond:||100–53 (.654)||56–23 (.709)|
|West Virginia Mountaineers (Big East Conference) (2002–2007)|
|2002–2003||West Virginia||14–15||5–11||6th (West)|
|2003–2004||West Virginia||17–14||7–9||T–8th||NIT Third Round|
|2004–2005||West Virginia||24–11||8–8||T–7th||NCAA Elite Eight|
|2005–2006||West Virginia||22–11||11–5||3rd||NCAA Sweet Sixteen|
|2006–2007||West Virginia||27–9||9–7||T–7th||NIT Champions|
|West Virginia:||104–60 (.634)||40–40 (.500)|
|Michigan Wolverines (Big Ten Conference) (2007–present)|
|2008–2009||Michigan||21–14||9–9||T–7th||NCAA Second Round|
|2010–2011||Michigan||21–14||9–9||T–4th||NCAA Third Round|
|2011–2012||Michigan||24–10||13–5||T–1st||NCAA Second Round|
|Michigan:||126–86 (.594)||55–53 (.509)|
|Division I Total:||419–261 (.616)||195–142 (.579)|
National champion Conference regular season champion Conference tournament champion
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