CBS Sports' Gary Parrish and Matt Norlander surveyed roughly 100 coaches for our annual Candid Coaches series. They polled everyone from head coaches at elite programs to assistants at small Division I schools. In exchange for complete anonymity, these coaches provided unfiltered honesty about a number of topics. Over the next few weeks, we'll be posting the results of our summer survey on the state of college basketball.
If you compiled a list about the best things about college basketball -- the features, quirks and ingredients that make the sport great -- the obvious go-to atop such a list is the majesty and spectacle that is the NCAA Tournament. But No. 2, as far as I'm concerned, is the frenzied, intoxicating environments within so many of the sport's treasured venues. The in-arena experience, but also how that excitement also translates to television, is one of college basketball's viable selling points over the NBA.
There are well over 100 barns that bear characteristics, intimidations and histories that make them distinct. Among all these enchanting hoops theaters, which rank as the very best? There's no better group to ask than the people who've experienced the highs and lows of being in these buildings for years, some for well over half their lives: the coaches.
Let's see what they had to say. Each coach polled was asked to submit their top three when we asked ...