Indianapolis, IN (SportsNetwork.com) - A day after his Kentucky Wildcats were ousted from the NCAA Tournament and lost their undefeated season, John Calipari was named the Naismith Men's Coach of the Year.
Calipari joined Duke's Mike Krzyzewski as the only three-time winners of the award, and all three came at different schools, first with the University of Massachusetts in 1996 and then the University of Memphis in 2008.
Although the season ended with a disappointing loss to Wisconsin in the Final Four, the Wildcats enjoyed an historic season. Kentucky set a program record with 38 wins in a row and went wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in the AP Poll. The Wildcats were the first team to enter the Final Four undefeated since UNLV in 1991.
"A coaching award is a staff award, and we are all celebrating these awards that are coming our way together because of the way these players have allowed us to coach them," said Calipari. "The Naismith award is one of the first national coaching awards I received back in 1996 and holds a special place with me."
The award is voted on by the Atlanta Tip-Off Club. The other finalists were Wisconsin's Bo Ryan, Villanova's Jay Wright and Virginia's Tony Bennett.
According to an ESPN report Sunday, Calipari will also be elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame with an announcement expected on Monday.