Week 12: HoopDirt.com Coach of the Week presented by Just Play Solutions

By AJ Nelson, HoopDirt.com staff writer

Congratulations to the following coaches who have been selected as the Week 12 HoopDirt.com Coach of the Week presented by Just Play Solutions. These coaches are now eligible to receive the HoopDirt.com National Coach of the Year Award presented by Just Play Solutions which will be announced at the conclusion of the 2021-22 college basketball season.

This is the seventh season that HoopDirt.com has run the Coach of the Week and Coach of the Year programs. The list 2021-22 Coach of the Week winners, as well as the list of all-time COY winners can be found following this week’s honorees.

To nominate coaches for future weeks, please email [email protected] with your selection(s).

The Week 12 winners are:

NCAA DI: Bruce Pearl – Auburn University

Aug 28, 2020; Auburn, AL, USA; Bruce Pearl poses for a photo during 2020 men's basketball headshots at Auburn Arena. Mandatory Credit: Shanna Lockwood/AU Athletics
Coach Pearl’s Tigers picked up another pair of wins this week, extending their winning streak to 17. Top-ranked Auburn struggled offensively at Missouri on Tuesday – shooting just 30.4% from the field, but came up with some huge plays late to return home with a 55-54 victory. The Tigers then hosted Oklahoma in the Big 12/SEC challenge on Saturday, taking an 86-68 victory for win No. 20 on the season. Now 20-1 (8-0 SEC), Auburn will look to extend the nation’s longest winning streak when it faces off against Alabama at home on Tuesday night.

NCAA DII: Bob Pietrack – Fort Lewis College

pietrack Coach Pietrack guided Fort Lewis College to two huge road wins over conference rivals this week. The Skyhawks trailed Colorado Mesa by as many as 10 in the second half on Friday, but rallied back into the game and eventually came away with an 83-77 victory. Back in action less than 24 hours later, Fort Lewis again found itself in a back and forth battle – this time against Westminster. The Skyhawks closed the contest on a 14-3 run, securing a 67-59 triumph and marking Coach Pietrack’s 350th win as a coach with Fort Lewis (223 as associate HC). His squad returns to the floor on Friday, when they host New Mexico Highlands.

NCAA DIII: Don Friday – Penn State Harrisburg

Don Friday With two impressive road victories this week, Coach Friday’s Lions remained unbeaten in conference play and extended their winning streak to 13. Penn State Harrisburg jumped out to a 16-point halftime lead over Wells on Friday and never looked back, taking an 89-67 victory. At Morrisville State the following day, the Lions were able to come away with a hard-fought 80-72 triumph to move to 16-1 (9-0 United East) on the season. Prior to Saturday’s eight-point victory, Penn State Harrisburg had won 11 straight contests by double-digits. The Lions will close out their three-game road trip on Tuesday, when they face off against St. Mary’s.

NAIA: Kyle Blankenship – LSU Shreveport

Kyle Blankenship PhotoCoach Blankenship led LSU Shreveport to three wins this week, including one on the road over a ranked opponent. The Pilots opened their week at No. 14 LSU Alexandria on Tuesday, taking an impressive 71-66 victory and handing the hosts their first loss of the season in conference play. The schedule would not get any easier for LSUS, as their next matchup came against then-undefeated Paul Quinn on Thursday. The Pilots were able to come away with an 80-75 triumph in a tightly-contested affair. Closing out the week on Saturday, LSUS shot an incredible 34-35 from the free throw line in a 108-98 victory over the University of the Southwest. Now 14-6 (7-1 RRAC) on the season, the Pilots will attempt to extend their winning streak to six when they match up against Louisiana College on the road on Thursday.

JUCO: Mike Hunter – Lakeland Community College

Michael Hunter Jr. Coach Hunter’s Lakeland squad remained unbeaten this week, picking up three more wins – all on the road. The then-No. 4 Lakers began their week by overpowering Terra State, out-rebounding the hosts 45-25 and taking a 91-52 victory. Back in action on Wednesday, Lakeland came away with another convincing win, this time picking up an 82-66 victory at Bryant & Stratton. The Lakers capped off their impressive week with an 86-77 triumph over Edison Community College on Saturday. Now 14-0 on the season, the Lakers was able to move up one spot to No. 3 in the most recent NJCAA DII Top 20 Poll. Their next contest is a road showdown with Lorain Community College on Tuesday.

2021-22 HoopDirt.com / Just Play Solutions Coach of the Week Winners

Week 1

NCAA DI: Gerald Gillion – Chicago State University
NCAA DII: Jeff Brookman – Anderson University
NCAA DIII: Rich Sutter – Westfield State University
NAIA: Kurt Paulson – Carroll College
JUCO: Jeremy Shulman – Eastern Florida State College

Week 2

NCAA DI: Lamont Paris – Chattanooga
NCAA DII: Bart Lundy – Queens University of Charlotte
NCAA DIII: Chris Carideo – Widener University
NAIA: Chris Wright – Talladega College
JUCO: Allen Sharpe – Wallace State Community College

Week 3

NCAA DI: T.J. Otzelberger – Iowa State
NCAA DII: Todd Duncan – Lubbock Christian University
NCAA DIII: Jeff Brown – Middlebury College
NAIA: Tigh Compton – University of Pikeville
JUCO: Hank Plona – Indian Hills Community College

Week 4

NCAA DI: Ed Cooley – Providence College
NCAA DII: Greg Clink – Cal State Chico
NCAA DIII: Tim Fusina – Waynesburg University
NAIA: Stacy Hollowell – Loyola University New Orleans
JUCO: Kyle Taylor – Salt Lake Community College

Week 5

NCAA DI: Kevin Willard – Seton Hall University
NCAA DII: Jason Taylor – Newberry College
NCAA DIII: Scott Coval – DeSales University
NAIA: Alfred Williams – Xavier University of Louisiana
JUCO: Jake Williams – Dodge City Community College

Week 6

NCAA DI: Speedy Claxton – Hofstra University
NCAA DII: Justin Weick – University of Minnesota Duluth
NCAA DIII: Raul Placeres – Maryville College
NAIA: Brandon Espinosa – Paul Quinn College
JUCO: Bill Beilein – Niagara County CC

Week 7

NCAA DI: Jerry Stackhouse – Vanderbilt University
NCAA DII: D2 winter break – no games played
NCAA DIII: Jimmy Smith – Trinity College (TX)
NAIA: Not enough games played (winter break + COVID cancellations)
JUCO: Not enough games played (winter break + COVID cancellations)

Week 8

NCAA DI: Scott Drew – Baylor University
NCAA DII: Shawn Walker – Elizabeth City State University
NCAA DIII: Ron Rose – Illinois Wesleyan University
NAIA: Colby Blaine – The College of Idaho
JUCO: Brandon Giles – Polk State College

Week 9

NCAA DI: Jim Larrañaga – University of Miami
NCAA DII: Vinay Patel – Northwestern Oklahoma State University
NCAA DIII: Todd McGuinness – Case Western Reserve University
NAIA: Lance Von Vogt – William Jessup University
JUCO: Greg Heiar – Northwest Florida State College

Week 10

NCAA DI: Dana Altman – University of Oregon
NCAA DII: Craig Doty – Emporia State University
NCAA DIII: Pat Juckem – Washington University in St. Louis
NAIA: Preston Ingram – Missouri Baptist University
JUCO: Bill Morosco – Garden City CC

Week 11

NCAA DI: Chris Victor – Seattle University
NCAA DII: George Suggs – McKendree University
NCAA DIII: Ryan Mee – Vassar College
NAIA: Matt O’Brien – Southwestern College
JUCO: Victor Correa – Suffolk County CC

Previous HoopDirt.com Coach of the Year Award Winners:

Division I

Division II

Division III



  • 2020-21: No winner named – COVID season
  • 2019-20: Randy Casey – Milwaukee Area Technical College
  • 2018-19: Billy Gillispie – Ranger College
  • 2017-18: Paul Cisek – Brookdale Community College
  • 2016-17: Todd Lorensen – Southwestern Community College
  • 2015-16: Craig Doty – Rock Valley College


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