Famous American Coaches

Imagine a professional sports team without a mentor coaching it from behind the bench. Better yet, imagine a Super Bowl game with no coach yelling, motivating, and jumping with thrill every time there is a blowout. Coaches are the lifeline of any team. No matter what the level of play is, if you want to succeed you need a coach, a really good one on top of that. Now only if you thought that a coaching is all about breaking down tape and doodling x's and o's, know that a coach has to do a lot more than that. Coaches are the real role models for their teams, a big inspiration, and a guiding force. Coaches invest in the success of athletes. At times, they are the ones who makes winning possible, thanks to the dedication, determination, diligence, and discipline they evoke within their players. Not just that, they also help eliminate all kind of stresses and assist players stay more focused. America has been a cradle of some really smart, talented, and able coaches who have steered America's greatest athletes and teams to grand victories. Let u learn about their timeline, trivia, and facts in the biographies here.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
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Famous As: Basketball Player, Basketball Coach
Birthdate: April 16, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American

Retired basketball player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a legendary NBA champion and its all-time leading scorer. Known for his trademark skyhook shot, he achieved remarkable feats during his career. Later, he pursued a successful writing and acting career and was even selected U.S. global cultural ambassador. The NBA star is also the proud recipient of the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 2 Nick Saban

Nick Saban
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: October 31, 1951
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American
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 3 Phil Jackson

Phil Jackson
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Famous As: Former Basketball Player, Executive & Coach
Birthdate: September 17, 1945
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American

Phil Jackson is a former professional basketball player who played 12 seasons in the National Basketball Association and won the NBA championships in 1970 and 1973 when he was with New York Knicks. Later, he coached the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers and led them both to numerous championships and league titles and is considered one of the greatest basketball coaches ever.

 4 Andy Reid

Andy Reid
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Famous As: Coaches
Birthdate: March 19, 1958
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

 5 Jim Harbaugh

Jim Harbaugh
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Famous As: American football coach
Birthdate: December 23, 1963
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: American

 6 Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: July 10, 1964
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: American

 7 Gregg Popovich

Gregg Popovich
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Famous As: Basketball Coach
Birthdate: January 28, 1949
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

Basketball coach Gregg Popovich currently serves as the head coach and president of the NBA team San Antonio Spurs. Known as Coach Pop, the three-time NBA Coach of the Year has scored the most wins NBA wins, leading the Spurs to 22 season wins, including five NBA titles.

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 8 Muggsy Bogues

Muggsy Bogues
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Famous As: Basketball player
Birthdate: January 9, 1965
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: American

 9 Mike Krzyzewski

Mike Krzyzewski
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Famous As: Basketball player, Basketball coach
Birthdate: February 13, 1947
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: Polish, American

 10 Tyronn Lue

Tyronn Lue
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Famous As: Basketball Coach
Birthdate: May 3, 1977
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

Tyronn Lue is an American basketball coach currently serving as the head coach for the popular team Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA. Previously, he coached the Cleveland Cavaliers, which won the 2016 NBA Finals under his guidance. During his playing career, Tyronn Lue helped the Los Angeles Lakers win two NBA championships.

 11 Dabo Swinney

Dabo Swinney
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Famous As: American Football Coach
Birthdate: November 20, 1969
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American

Dabo Swinney is an American football coach. The highest-paid coach in college athletics history, Dabo Swinney helped the Clemson Tigers of the Clemson University win two national championships; he is the second-most successful head coach in Clemson history, only behind Frank Howard.

 12 Ed Orgeron

Ed Orgeron
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Famous As: Coach
Birthdate: July 27, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: American

 13 Lane Kiffin

Lane Kiffin
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Famous As: Sports coach, American football player
Birthdate: May 9, 1975
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

 14 Penny Hardaway

Penny Hardaway
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Famous As: Basketball coach
Birthdate: July 18, 1971
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: American

 15 Pat Riley

Pat Riley
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Famous As: Basketball player, Basketball coach, Coach
Birthdate: March 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

 16 Vince Lombardi

Vince Lombardi
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: June 11, 1913
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: American
Died: September 3, 1970

Football coach, Vince Lombardi, is best known for being the head coach of the Green Bay Packers during the 1960s. Beginning his career as a high school coach, he eventually started coaching  National Football League (NFL) teams. As a head coach in the NFL, he never had a losing season. He died of cancer in 1970.

 17 Jerry Krause

Jerry Krause
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Famous As: Scout
Birthdate: April 6, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American
Died: March 21, 2017

 18 Jordan Rodgers

Jordan Rodgers
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: August 30, 1988
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American

 19 Chip Kelly

Chip Kelly
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Famous As: Coach
Birthdate: November 25, 1963
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American

 20 Jason Garrett

Jason Garrett
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Famous As: American Football Coach
Birthdate: March 28, 1966
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American

 21 Doc Rivers

Doc Rivers
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Famous As: Basketball Coach
Birthdate: October 13, 1961
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

Doc Rivers is a former American basketball player, who in his thirteen seasons played primarily for Atlanta Hawks and was known for his defence. After retirement, he picked up coaching responsibilities for Orlando Magic and in his first year was awarded NBA Coach of the Year. Later, he led Boston Celtics to NBA championship. He is currently the coach of Philadelphia 76ers.

 22 Joe Paterno

Joe Paterno
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Famous As: American Football Player
Birthdate: December 21, 1926
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American
Died: January 22, 2012

College football player, athletic director, and coach, Joe Paterno, is best remembered for being the head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions from 1966 to 2011. In his extensive coaching career, he registered 409 victories. His career ended abruptly when he was dismissed as a result of the Penn State child sex abuse scandal. He died shortly after.

 23 Jimmy Johnson

Jimmy Johnson
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: July 16, 1943
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: American
Jimmy Johnson, also known as “Jimmy Jumpup," led the Dallas Cowboys as their head coach and won two Super Bowls consecutively. He has also coached teams such as the Miami Dolphins and Oklahoma State. He is one of two NFL coaches to be inducted into the “Centennial Class.” 

 24 Bruce Arians

Bruce Arians
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: October 3, 1952
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

 25 Doug Pederson

Doug Pederson
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Famous As: Football coach
Birthdate: January 31, 1968
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

 26 Mike Ditka

Mike Ditka
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Famous As: American Football Player, NFL Coach
Birthdate: October 18, 1939
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American
Mike Ditka, nicknamed “Iron Mike,” was a star footballer for the Chicago Bears, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the Dallas Cowboys. He has coached the Cowboys and has also trained the Bears to win the Super Bowl XX. He has also worked as a sports broadcaster for ESPN and NBC.  

 27 Joe Bryant

Joe Bryant
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Famous As: Basketball Players
Birthdate: October 19, 1954
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

 28 Kyle Shanahan

Kyle Shanahan
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Famous As: Football Coach
Birthdate: December 14, 1979
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American
Kyle Shanahan is the head coach of the NFL team San Francisco 49ers. He has previously been the offensive coordinator for teams such as the Atlanta Falcons, the Houston Texans, the Cleveland Browns, and the Washington Redskins. He helped the 49ers appear in Super Bowl LIV.

 29 Steve Blake

Steve Blake
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Famous As: Basketball player
Birthdate: February 26, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

 30 Robert Montgomery Knight

Robert Montgomery Knight
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Birthdate: October 25, 1940
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American

 31 Bob Knight

Bob Knight
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Famous As: Basketball coach, Basketball player
Birthdate: October 25, 1940
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American

 32 Tony Dungy

Tony Dungy
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Famous As: Former NFL Coach & American Football Player
Birthdate: October 6, 1955
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

Former American football player and coach, Tony Dungy, currently works as an advisor for the professional football team, The Houston Texans. An evangelical Christian, Dungy has been an integral part of several community service organizations over the years. Also a writer, Dungy claims that his memoir Quiet Strength has touched the lives of many.

 33 Rick Pitino

Rick Pitino
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Famous As: Basketball Coach
Birthdate: September 18, 1952
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American

Rick Pitino is an American basketball coach, currently serving as the head coach of the Greece national basketball team. Previously, Pitino has served as the head coach of many teams in NCAA Division I. He has the distinction of being the only coach to lead three different schools to a Final Four.

 34 Brad Stevens

Brad Stevens
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Famous As: Basketball coach
Birthdate: October 22, 1976
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

 35 Bill Parcells

Bill Parcells
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Famous As: Coach, American football player
Birthdate: August 22, 1941
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: American

 36 Matt Patricia

Matt Patricia
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Famous As: NFL Coach
Birthdate: September 13, 1974
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American
Matt Patricia is best known for his 14-season stint as an assistant coach of the NFL team New England Patriots, including six seasons, from 2012 to 2017, as their defensive coordinator. He helped the Patriots win three Super Bowls and later became the head coach of the Detroit Lions.

 37 Pat Summitt

Pat Summitt
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Famous As: Coach
Birthdate: June 12, 1952
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: American
Died: June 28, 2016

 38 Lou Holtz

Lou Holtz
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Famous As: American Football Coach
Birthdate: January 6, 1937
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: American

Lou Holtz has been the head football coach of teams such as the New York Jets. He led Notre Dame to be the national champions. Holtz became the only coach to guide four programs to the final top 20. The College Football Hall of Famer later became an ESPN analyst.

 39 Don Shula

Don Shula
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: January 4, 1930
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: American

 40 Bear Bryant

Bear Bryant
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Famous As: Football Player, Coache
Birthdate: September 11, 1913
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American
Died: January 26, 1983

Bear Bryant was an American football player who represented the Crimson Tide of the University of Alabama. Bryant is remembered for his illustrious career as a coach. He served as the head coach of the Crimson Tide for 25 years, during which he helped his team win six national championships. He is regarded as the greatest college football coach ever.

 41 Matt LaFleur

Matt LaFleur
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Famous As: American football coach
Birthdate: November 3, 1979
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American

 42 Les Miles

Les Miles
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Famous As: American Football Coach
Birthdate: November 10, 1953
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: American

 43 Rex Ryan

Rex Ryan
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Famous As: Head coach
Birthdate: December 13, 1962
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American

 44 John Harbaugh

John Harbaugh
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Famous As: Sports coach, American football player
Birthdate: September 23, 1962
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American

 45 Steve Sarkisian

Steve Sarkisian
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Famous As: Coach
Birthdate: March 8, 1974
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

 46 Jeff Fisher

Jeff Fisher
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Famous As: American Football Player
Birthdate: February 25, 1958
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

 47 Jimbo Fisher

Jimbo Fisher
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Famous As: American football player
Birthdate: October 9, 1965
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

 48 Gary Kubiak

Gary Kubiak
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Famous As: American footballer
Birthdate: August 15, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: American

 49 Steve Spurrier

Steve Spurrier
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Birthdate: April 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American
Former American football player Steve Spurrier, or Head Ball Coach, won the 1966 Heisman Trophy, playing for the Florida Gators. He was then drafted by the NFL team San Francisco 49ers and also represented the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. As a coach, he has won the ACC and SEC championships.

 50 Mike Singletary

Mike Singletary
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Famous As: American Football coach
Birthdate: October 9, 1958
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American