Norm Stewart’s 80th birthday on Tuesday occurs the day after Kansas defeated Oklahoma in a wild game at Allen Fieldhouse, and the events have a relationship.
A few hours before tip-off, I wondered about opposing coaches who had won in the building named for Phog Allen.
There aren’t many.
This is Allen Fieldhouse’s 60th season (722-109 all time after the Jayhawks’ Monday victory), and in the past 27 years, the era of Larry Brown/Roy Williams/Bill Self, 23 opposing coaches have won in the building.
None more than Stewart. His teams of 1990, 1994 and 1999 left Allen with a victory, the final one coming in Stewart’s last year. His 11 victories overall in Allen Fieldhouse (with 21 losses) are the most of any coach.
I thought about this because Lon Kruger was returning to Lawrence with the Sooners, and he’s one of two active coaches with multiple victories at Allen. Kruger’s Kansas State teams of 1988 and 1989 beat the Jayhawks. The 1988 team, led by Mitch Richmond, ended KU’s 55-game home-floor winning streak.
The other current coach to win more than once in Allen: Larry Eustachy of Colorado State. His Iowa State teams won in 2000 and 2001. The Cyclones were Big 12 champions those years.
Here are the other active coaches who have won in Allen:
2013-14 Steve Fisher, San Diego State
2012-13 Travis Ford, Oklahoma State
2010-11 Rick Barnes, Texas
2006-07 Scott Sutton, Oral Roberts
2005-06 Mark Fox, Nevada (now at Georgia)
1993-94 Dana Altman, Kansas State (now at Oregon)
1988-89 Leonard Hamilton, Oklahoma State (now at Florida State)
1987-88 Mike Krzyzewski, Duke