Hall of Fame
Jan. 2, 2017
FINALISTS FOR INAUGURAL RUNWAY TO FASHIONABLE 4 HALL
The Class of 2017 will
be announced in April in Phoenix, AZ
BOSTON, MA --- The ten finalists for the inaugural
Runway to the Fashionable 4 Hall of Fame were announced
on Monday. The class of 2017 will be officially
announced this April in Phoenix, site of the Division I
men’s Basketball Championship.
March 2017 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Runway
to the Fashionable 4, which began in 1998 as a 16-coach
event. In 2000 the field expanded to 64 coaches and in
2001 the Assistant Coach Tournament was established for
the first time.
Villanova’s Jay Wright and former Drexel head coach
Bruiser Flint have each won four fashion titles, which
is the most in Runway history. Current Detroit head
coach Bacari Alexander won seven Assistant Coach
The 20th Runway to the Fashionable will begin in March.
2017 HALL OF FAME FINALISTS
Bacari Alexander: The 7-time champion on the
catwalk has advanced to the Fashionable 4 nine times. He
made 12 consecutive appears in the Fashion Tournament
and is the only coach to appear in the Fashionable 4
with four different schools (Detroit, Michigan, Ohio and
Western Michigan). He also the only coach to ever be
crowned most fashionable with three different schools
(Detroit, Michigan and Western Michigan).
Jay Bilas: One of the most stylish sports
analysts in America, Bilas was one of the first members
of the national media to embrace the fashion frenzy. The
man who once described his fashion sense as being “very
ill considered,” Bilas has been taken his attire to a
new level since joining ESPN in 1995. Known for his
signature Cary Grant pocket square, Bilas has succeeded
in making the Blue Suede Shoes more famous than Elvis.
John Calipari: He is one of just five coaches in
history to compete in all 19 Fashion Tournaments and has
made three appearances in the Fashionable 4. Being
crowned best-dressed is about the only thing Calipari
has not achieved in his coaching career, but he has made
a great contribution to style by producing five
assistant coaches who went on to be Runway Champions
(Bruiser Flint - 4 and Orlando Antigua - 1). That’s the
most in the history of the tournament.
Tim Capstraw: Known less for his fashion-sense
and more for his creativity, Capstraw is the Dr. James
Naismith of style points. The former Wagner head coach
is credited with creating the fashion event in 1998.
While he was only involved with the event for two years,
his contributions are immeasurable and his wit and
wisdom helped to lay the fashion foundation for the
future. Capstraw got his start in coaching at Siena with
Mike Deane who he later described as being one of the
worst-dressed coaches in basketball history.
James "Bruiser" Flint: One of the true all-time
fashion greats, Flint is one of only two coaches to ever
win four titles (2001, 2005, 2010, and 2015) and one of
five coaches to appear in all 19 Fashion Tournaments.
The lavishing legend, who often recruited at Boyd’s in
Philadelphia, advanced to the Fashionable eight times
during his career and still holds the record of 81
consecutive weeks (regular season) being ranked No. 1 in
the Fashion Power Index (FPI).
Sal Mentesana: One of the true pioneers of style,
the former Lehigh coach appeared in the first five
fashion tournaments (1998-2002) and made three
consecutive appearances in the Fashionable 4, winning it
all in 2000. Mentesana’s walk on the catwalk in 2000 was
chronicled by John Feinstein in his book, “The Last
Amateurs,” which went in-depth on the Patriot League.
Magnificent Mentesana was known for his signature
Rick Pitino: One of the most debonair coaches to
ever walk the sidelines and the catwalk. The two-time
Fashionable 4 champion (2009, 2014) is one of five
coaches to appear in all 19 Fashion Tournaments. Pitino
forever changed the fashion world on February 9, 2008
when he sported the now infamous “white suit.” ESPN’s
Jay Bilas described it as ‘a choice that would have made
Colonel Sanders cry fowl.’ Nevertheless he considered by
many to the most stylish coach of all-time.
Gary Waters: The three-time champion (2003, 2008
and 2012) has made six Fashionable 4 appearances and has
been to 17 consecutive Fashion Tournaments. He also has
the distinction of being the only head coach to ever
advance to the Fashionable 4 with three different
schools (Cleveland State, Kent State and Rutgers).
Recognized for signature 4-point play with the pocket
square, Waters has amassed one of the world’s greatest
shoe collections of all-time.
Willis Wilson: One of the most regal to ever step
on to the catwalk. Wilson has advanced to the
Fashionable 4 a tournament record 11 times. One of just
five coaches to ever appear in all 19 Fashion
Tournaments, Wilson was crowned best-dressed in 2002 and
again in 2007. He was part of the 2005 Fashionable 4,
which is still the only one to have 4 former champions
(Neil Dougherty, TCU; Bruiser Flint, Drexel; and Jay
Jay Wright: The Vince Lombardi of style, Wright
captured the first two Fashion crowns in the 1998 and
99, while coaching at Hofstra. Wright is one of only two
coaches to win four championships and he is second only
to Willis Wilson for most Fashionable 4 appearances with
10. Wright is also one of just five coaches to appear in
all 19 Fashion Tournament. Analysts have called him
“George Clooney,” “Elvis” and arguably the most
fashionable coach in history,