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Joseph Donald Barnett (born January 10, 1944) is an American retired college basketball coach. He was a former head basketball coach at several Division I institutions, the most high-profile being Virginia Commonwealth University, where his most notable win consisted of a buzzer-beater NCAA Tournament win over Jim Calhoun's Northeastern Huskies. He is also well known for being a mentor of Tubby Smith, the current head coach at High Point University. Most notably, Barnett taught Smith the philosophy of ball-line defense,[2] which is a strategy that requires all defenders to stay between the line of the ball and the baseline. He was most recently the head coach and athletic director at Division II Hawaii Pacific.[3]

J. D. Barnett
Biographical details
Born (1944-01-10) January 10, 1944 (age 75)
Meadville, Missouri
Playing career
1964–1966Winona State
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1971–1972High Point
1973–1977West Texas State (asst.)
1977–1979Louisiana Tech
1994–1999Northwestern State
2004–2005Hawaii Pacific
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
1991–1994Tulsa Union HS
1994–1999Northwestern State (assoc.)
2000–2004Tulane (assoc.)
2004–2005Hawaii Pacific
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
MVC regular season championship (1987)
MVC Tournament championship (1986)
MVC Coach of the Year (1987)

Barnett graduated from Winona State University in 1966 with two varsity letters each in baseball and basketball. He was inducted into the school's athletic hall of fame in 2002.[4]

Coaching careerEdit

Barnett has a career record of 317–229 (.580) in Division I basketball, including 7 NCAA Tournament appearances. During his stay at Virginia Commonwealth, Barnett led the Rams to 5 NCAA tournament appearances, with 4 of those resulting in 1st round victories.[5] In his first two years at Tulsa, he led the Golden Hurricane to back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances. Both of those, however, resulted in 1st round exits.[6] That was the last time J.D. Barnett made the NCAAs.

Also, Maurice Cheeks, former head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, was recruited by and played under Barnett while he was an assistant coach at West Texas State. While at West Texas State, Barnett is credited with organizing "The Cager Club", a support group which helped the basketball program.

In addition, Tom Izzo was hired by Barnett to be his recruiting coordinator at Tulsa. Izzo left a low paying student assistant position with Jud Heathcote to take the position with Tulsa. That experiment lasted all of seven weeks before Jud called Izzo offering him an assistant coaching position back in East Lansing.

Administrative careerEdit

From 1991 to 1994, Barnett was athletic director at Union High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Barnett also served as associate athletic director at Northwestern State while head men's basketball coach from 1994 to 1999. From 2000 to 2004, Barnett was senior associate athletic director for revenue development at Tulane University in New Orleans.[7][8]

Coaching treeEdit

These former players and assistant coaches to Barnett later became head coaches.

Head coaching recordEdit

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Lenoir–Rhyne Bears (NCAA College Division independent) (1970–1971)
1970–71 Lenoir–Rhyne 17–9
Lenoir–Rhyne: 17–9
High Point (NCAA College Division independent) (1971–1972)
1971–72 High Point 13–16
High Point: 13–16
Louisiana Tech Bulldogs (Southland Conference) (1977–1979)
1977–78 Louisiana Tech 6–21 2–8 T–5th
1978–79 Louisiana Tech 17–8 6–4 T–2nd
Louisiana Tech: 23–29 8–12
VCU Rams (Sun Belt Conference) (1979–1985)
1979–80 VCU 18–12 8–6 5th NCAA First Round
1980–81 VCU 24–5 9–3 T–1st NCAA Second Round
1981–82 VCU 17–11 7–3 2nd
1982–83 VCU 24–7 12–2 T–1st NCAA Second Round
1983–84 VCU 23–7 11–3 1st NCAA Second Round
1984–85 VCU 26–6 12–2 1st NCAA Second Round
VCU: 132–48 59–19
Tulsa Golden Hurricane (Missouri Valley Conference) (1985–1991)
1985–86 Tulsa 23–9 10–6 T–2nd NCAA First Round
1986–87 Tulsa 22–8 11–3 1st NCAA First Round
1987–88 Tulsa 8–20 4–10 7th
1988–89 Tulsa 18–13 10–4 T–2nd
1989–90 Tulsa 17–13 9–5 T–2nd NIT First Round
1990–91 Tulsa 18–12 10–6 3rd NIT First Round
Tulsa: 106–75 54–34
Northwestern State Demons (Southland Conference) (1994–1999)
1994–95 Northwestern State 13–14 8–10 6th
1995–96 Northwestern State 5–21 3–15 10th
1996–97 Northwestern State 13–15 8–8 T–4th
1997–98 Northwestern State 13–14 10–6 T–2nd
1998–99 Northwestern State 11–15 8–10 T–7th
Northwestern State: 55–79 37–49
Hawaii Pacific Sea Warriors (Pacific West Conference) (2004–2005)
2004–05 Hawaii Pacific 10–16 4–11 5th[15]
Hawaii Pacific: 10–16 4–11
Total: 356–272

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


  1. ^ "Men's Basketball Coaches Career" (Search for J.D. Barnett under the appropriate settings). National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
  2. ^ Medcalf, Myron (2008-11-26). "Tubby Smith's top priority: Guard the ball". Minneapolis Star-Tribune. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
  3. ^ Campany, Jerry (2005-05-12). "HPU's AD/basketball coach resigns". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
  4. ^ ""J.D." Joseph D. Barnett, Class of 1966". Winona State University. Retrieved March 10, 2015.
  5. ^ Basketball State
  6. ^ Basketball State
  7. ^ "Barnett Completes Tulane External Staff Reorganization". Tulane Green Wave. September 22, 2000. Retrieved July 22, 2015.
  8. ^ "J.D. Barnett". Tulane. 2004. Retrieved July 22, 2015.
  9. ^
  10. ^,va%29/basketball/previous_seasons.htm
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ Tush, Terry (June 28, 1991). "Bontrager favorite for coaching job". Tulsa World. Retrieved July 22, 2015.
  15. ^

External linksEdit