The Most Famous Coach: A Ranking of Legendary Sporting Leaders

Choose the coach you think is the most famous!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 3, 2024 07:05
Who's the mastermind behind the greatest sports victories, the leader who inspires champions, and the strategist who turns underdogs into legends? It's time for you to decide! Welcome to StrawPoll's ultimate ranking of "Who is the most famous coach?" Dive into our diverse list featuring the most renowned coaching icons across different sports, eras, and countries. Cast your vote for your all-time favorite or join the conversation by suggesting a missing coaching maestro who deserves to be in the spotlight. Get ready to explore the genius of these legendary figures and share your thoughts with fellow sports enthusiasts. So, what are you waiting for? Put on your game face, take the field, and let the thrilling debate begin!

Who Is the Most Famous Coach?

  1. 1
    Vince Lombardi
    Unknown authorUnknown author · Public domain

    Vince Lombardi

    Tiffany & Company
    Vince Lombardi considered one of the greatest football coaches of all time, Lombardi led the Green Bay Packers to five NFL championships and two Super Bowl titles in the 1960s.
    The Vince Lombardi Trophy is the trophy awarded to the winners of the National Football League (NFL) annual championship game, known as the Super Bowl.
    • Design: The trophy is made of sterling silver and stands about 22 inches tall, weighing about 7 pounds.
    • Base: The trophy sits on a black base made of elegantly carved wood.
    • Name: The trophy is named after Vince Lombardi, former head coach of the Green Bay Packers
    • Inscription: The trophy features the words 'Vince Lombardi Trophy' engraved on it, along with the Super Bowl logo.
    • Yearly update: Each year, a new Lombardi Trophy is created for the Super Bowl champions with the team name, game number, and date inscribed.
    Vince Lombardi in other rankings
  2. 2

    John Wooden

    John Wooden
    John Wooden regarded as the most successful college basketball coach ever, Wooden won 10 NCAA titles with UCLA, including seven in a row from 1967 to 1973.
    John Wooden is widely regarded as one of the most successful coaches of all time in American collegiate basketball. He is known for his achievements as the head coach of the UCLA Bruins men's basketball team.
    • NCAA Championships: 10
    • Consecutive NCAA Championships: 7
    • Overall NCAA Tournament Appearances: 12
    • Conference Championships: 19
    • National Coach of the Year Awards: 7
    John Wooden in other rankings
  3. 3

    Phil Jackson

    Phil Jackson
    Phil Jackson also known as the "Zen Master," Jackson won 11 NBA championships as a head coach, including six with the Chicago Bulls and five with the Los Angeles Lakers.
    Phil Jackson is a renowned basketball coach known for his success and achievements in the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is widely regarded as one of the most successful coaches of all time.
    • Number of NBA Championships: 11
    • Number of NBA Finals Appearances: 13
    • Number of Coach of the Year Awards: 1
    • Career Regular Season Win Percentage: 70.4%
    • Career Playoff Win Percentage: 68.8%
    Phil Jackson in other rankings
  4. 4

    Bill Belichick

    Bill Belichick
    Bill Belichick currently the head coach of the New England Patriots, Belichick has won six Super Bowl titles and is widely regarded as one of the best football coaches in history.
    Bill Belichick is an American football coach who is widely regarded as one of the most successful coaches of all time. He has achieved immense success as the head coach of the New England Patriots in the National Football League (NFL).
    • Super Bowl Championships: 6
    • Conference Championships: 9
    • Division Championships: 17
    • Coach of the Year: 3
    • Winning Percentage: 68.8%
    Bill Belichick in other rankings
  5. 5
    Gregg Popovich
    The Obama White House · Public domain

    Gregg Popovich

    Gregg Popovich
    Gregg Popovich as the head coach of the San Antonio Spurs, Popovich has won five NBA championships and is known for his leadership and coaching style.
    Gregg Popovich is a highly successful basketball coach known for his tenure with the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest coaches in basketball history.
    • Coaching Career: He has been the head coach of the San Antonio Spurs since 1996, leading them to five NBA championships in 1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2014.
    • Consistency: Under Popovich's leadership, the Spurs have made the playoffs in every season from 1998 to 2020, making it a record 22 consecutive appearances.
    • Winning Percentage: He holds the highest winning percentage of any active NBA coach and ranks third all-time in winning percentage (regular season and playoffs combined).
    • Player Development: Popovich is renowned for his ability to develop young players and mold them into key contributors, with a track record of success stories like Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker, and Kawhi Leonard.
    • International Success: He has also had success coaching international teams, including winning gold medals with Team USA at the 2002 FIBA World Championship and the 2004 Olympic Games.
    Gregg Popovich in other rankings
  6. 6
    Pat Summitt
    Blueag9 · Public domain

    Pat Summitt

    Pat Summitt
    Pat Summitt the winningest coach in NCAA basketball history, Summitt coached the women's team at the University of Tennessee to eight national championships and 1,098 wins.
    Pat Summitt was one of the most successful coaches in the history of women's college basketball. She was known for her remarkable leadership, passion, and dedication to the game. Summitt's coaching career spanned over four decades and was characterized by her relentless pursuit of excellence.
    • Total Wins: 1,098
    • NCAA Championships: 8
    • Final Four Appearances: 18
    • SEC Regular Season Titles: 16
    • SEC Tournament Titles: 16
    Pat Summitt in other rankings
  7. 7
    Bear Bryant a legendary football coach, Bryant led the University of Alabama to six national championships and 323 wins over his career.
    Bear Bryant in other rankings
  8. 8
    Don Shula one of the most successful coaches in NFL history, Shula won two Super Bowl titles and holds the record for most wins by a head coach in the league.
    Don Shula in other rankings
  9. 9

    Red Auerbach

    Red Auerbach
    Red Auerbach a Hall of Fame basketball coach, Auerbach won nine NBA championships with the Boston Celtics and is known for his innovative strategies and leadership.
    Red Auerbach is a legendary American professional basketball coach. He is widely regarded as one of the most successful coaches of all time, having achieved great accomplishments during his career.
    • Championships: He won a record-breaking 9 NBA championships as the head coach of the Boston Celtics.
    • Innovations: Introduced various groundbreaking strategies such as the fast break and full-court press.
    • Player development: Known for developing players' abilities and bringing out their full potential.
    • Mentoring: Mentored and impacted the careers of many successful coaches in the league.
    • Winning record: Achieved an impressive winning percentage of nearly 70% throughout his coaching career.
    Red Auerbach in other rankings
  10. 10
    Bobby Bowden a college football coach, Bowden led Florida State University to two national championships and 377 wins over his career.
    Bobby Bowden in other rankings

Missing your favorite coach?


Ranking factors for famous coach

  1. Success
    Coaches with a record of success, such as multiple championships or winning seasons, are often more famous than those with a history of losses.
  2. Legacy
    Coaches who have a lasting impact on their sport or team, either through innovation or creating a winning culture, are often more famous.
  3. Public Perception
    Coaches who are well-liked or respected by the public or media may also be more famous.
  4. Longevity
    A coach who has a long career and has maintained success over a significant period of time may also be considered famous.
  5. Influence
    Coaches who have influenced the game in significant ways, such as through their coaching philosophy or style, may be considered famous.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most famous coach. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or coach is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 208 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each coach once every 24 hours. The rank of each coach is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most famous coach

Background Information: Who is the Most Famous Coach? Coaching is an integral part of sports, and the role of a coach is to train, motivate, and guide players towards their goals. Over the years, there have been several great coaches who have made a significant impact on their respective sports. However, the question of who is the most famous coach is subjective and can vary depending on the sport, region, and era. One of the most iconic coaches in the world of basketball is Phil Jackson. With 11 NBA championships under his belt, Jackson is widely regarded as one of the most successful coaches in NBA history. He is known for his unique coaching style, which emphasized mindfulness, teamwork, and discipline. In soccer, Sir Alex Ferguson is considered one of the most famous coaches of all time. The former Manchester United manager led the team to numerous victories during his tenure, including 13 Premier League titles and two UEFA Champions League trophies. His leadership and strategic approach to the game have made him an icon in the world of soccer. Other notable coaches who have left a lasting impression on their respective sports include Vince Lombardi in American football, Arsene Wenger in soccer, and John Wooden in basketball. Each of these coaches has contributed to the evolution of their sport and has inspired future generations of coaches and players. In conclusion, the question of who is the most famous coach is not easy to answer. There are several great coaches across different sports who have made a significant impact on their respective fields. Ultimately, it comes down to personal opinion and the legacy that these coaches

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