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3 College Basketball Coaches Who Need a March Madness Run to Save Their Job

Shaka Smart
Shaka Smart could be on his way out | Chris Covatta/Getty Images

The college basketball campaign is speeding towards the annual dramatic finish in March and April, which means that several college coaches on the hot seat are running out of time to throw ice water on that seat and prove they belong. These three coaches are currently sitting on a knife edge, just a few wins or losses away from either making or missing out on the NCAA tournament. If these guys can't craft a March Madness run, they're as good as done.

3. Josh Pastner, Georgia Tech

Josh Pastner
Pastner has struggled in Atlanta | Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Once all of John Calipari's recruiting magic dried up and Memphis left Conference USA for the tougher AAC, Pastner led a massive regression with the Tigers program. Upon being hired at Georgia Tech, he has done little to get the Yellow Jackets near the top of the ACC, as he went from 21 wins in Year 1 to 13 the next year and 14 after that. Currently overseeing an 11-13 Tech team plagued with a scandal, Pastner's firing is almost a certainty unless he can pull a rabbit out of his hat and make it into March.

2. Shaka Smart, Texas

Shaka Smart
Shaka Smart better start winning soon in Austin | Chris Covatta/Getty Images

Smart's "havoc" defense brought VCU into the national spotlight, but he has failed to make the same sort of impact in March as the head man in Austin. Smart might have an NIT championship, but he has won just 54 percent of his games with the Longhorns, and he's failed to challenge Kansas, Baylor, or Texas Tech at the top of the Big 12. Smart better turn the clock back to his days with the Rams if he wants to keep his job.

1. Greg Gard, Wisconsin

Greg Gard
Wisconsin head coach Greg Gard | Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Gard was handed the keys to team that made the NCAA championship game under Bo Ryan the year before, and he's failed to get things really rolling in Madison. Gard was in charge of the first Badgers team in nearly 20 years to miss out on the NCAA tournament, and a 13-10 record isn't exactly going to inspire a ton of hope around Madison. Gard has been with the program forever, but he is running out of time to remain the head man.