BERKELEY, Calif. — It's been a banner week for milestones in the basketball coaching biz, with both Stanford women's coach Tara VanDerveer and Syracuse men's coach Jim Boeheim notching their 1,000th victories in recent days.
Colorado men's coach Tad Boyle knows he won't reach that plateau. Yet the Buffaloes' leader nonetheless is on the cusp of his own milestone, as a victory in Sunday afternoon's battle at Cal would be the 200th for Boyle as a Division I head coach.
Boyle's career began somewhat inauspiciously, as his first season as a head coach ended with just four wins as he undertook a rebuilding project at Northern Colorado during the 2006-07 season. By the time he left UNC after three more years it was on the heels of a 25-win season, and the following year his recruits took the Bears to their first NCAA Tournament appearance.
Boyle won 24 games in each of his first two seasons at CU, and he averaged almost 22 wins per season (21.7) through his first six full seasons with the Buffaloes.
"The first year at UNC we only won four games. I didn't get off to a good start," said Boyle, who sports a 13-10 overall record in his seventh season at CU. "Milestones like that, they're more of a statement to your longevity. I will say this — I didn't get into coaching until relatively late. I didn't start coaching college basketball until I was 30 and I didn't become a head coach until I was 43. I came a little bit late to the party. (200) is nice. My whole thing is that I'm into winning percentage. That's what I want. The higher that is, the better."
Boyle heads into the Cal game with a .614 winning percentage at CU, the third-best mark in school history. He owns a 143-90 mark with the Buffs heading into Sunday's game.