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Rick Barnes      

Current head coach of the University of Texas Longhorns men's basketball team.

Rick Barnes was born July 17, 1954 in Hickory, North Carolina and is the current head coach of the University of Texas Longhorns men's basketball team. He has coached Texas for the last ten seasons, taking the team to the NCAA Tournament each year, including a Final Four appearance led by T. J. Ford in 2003. Barnes previously coached at George Mason University, Providence College, and Clemson University. He is a 1977 graduate of Lenoir-Rhyne College where he was a member of the men's basketball team.

Barnes' success at Texas, a traditional football powerhouse, has sparked interest in college basketball at the university and throughout the state of Texas. Hired in April 1998, the basketball program immediately displayed Barnes' impact. Despite playing with just seven scholarship players for the majority of the 1998–1999 season — and opening the season with a 3-8 record — the Longhorns won 16 of their final 21 games, winning the regular season Big 12 conference championship by a two-game margin, and finishing the year at 19-13 and in the NCAA Tournament. Barnes received his third Big 12 Coach of the Year award on March 10, 2008.

Barnes has had great regular season success with 400+ wins and has transformed Texas into a one of the top college basketball programs in the nation. However, he has won only one post season conference tourney championship (Providence, 1994 Big East) in his 21 years as a collegiate head coach. He has an overall record of 18–16 (.529) in the NCAA tournament (16-10 at Texas). In seven of his ten years at Texas, the Longhorns went on to lose to a lower seed in the NCAA Tournament. Currently, the Longhorns are only one of three teams to have made the Sweet 16 5 times in the last 7 years, with the others being Duke and Kansas. As for his coaching tree, Rick Barnes has had four of his assistants hired to head coaching gigs with Larry Shyatt formerly coaching Wyoming and Clemson, Dennis Felton at Western Kentucky and now Georgia, Frank Haith at Miami, and Ken McDonald going to Western Kentucky.

Barnes shot down speculation that he would entertain leaving for the University of Kentucky’s vacant head coaching job after Kentucky's first choice, University of Florida head coach Billy Donovan, turned them down. The job eventually went to Texas A&M's head coach, Billy Gillispie.


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