Coaches can hold a certain mystique in today’s world. Many of them are nearly as famous as their players because of their personalities, achievements, and overall bodies of work. However, not every coach is a calm and stable human. Quite a few coaches are amongst the wackiest characters who are embarrassed in the public eye today.
This list isn’t about the worst coaches in the world. Some of these coaches and managers to follow are incredibly successful. However, they are also extremely eccentric. Then there are those who made incredibly poor or strange choices without thinking about the consequences. Check out our list below via Bleacher Report.
25. Ozzie Guillen
Guillen is an obvious candidate for this list because of his personality. He’s definitely one of the wackiest coaches in the world. This is because the Venezualan is so outspoken. One of his most controversial moments came when he showed support for Fidel Castro. Obviously, the U.S doesn’t love socialism. In short, this was like using salt in a recipe where sugar was required.
He also used a homophobic slur in relation to a Chicago journalist. This didn’t win him many new fans either. However, there is no doubt that he was an effective coach. He coached the White Sox to a rare World Series title. Because of that, many fans were immediately prepared to overlook his flaws. But this wild individual doesn’t care what people think.
Backman spent eight seasons with the New York Mets and won the World Series. After retiring from playing, he became a baseball coach. However, Backman is also one of the angriest men on the planet. His time in charge of the South George Peanuts was most noticeable for a single amazing rant. This was because he used almost 100 expletives in the course of just a few minutes.
The coach is infamously outspoken and this cost him at various points in his career. But it makes his interviews some of the wackiest in the sport. Nobody knows what he will say because he has no filter. While his life outside of baseball isn’t always inspiring, he is an entertaining figure. Backman isn’t afraid to chew his team out but goes too far.
Tortorella is infamously volatile. The hockey coach led the likes of the Columbus Blue Jackets and the New York Rangers. His teams often established superb regular-season records. However, this never translated to postseason success. Despite this, he was a two-time NHL Coach of the Year. When he’s not feuding with the media or fans, he’s actually good at his job.
One of the wackiest incidents was his confrontation with Larry Brooks. Here, he threatened to fight the journalist. He also threw a water bottle at Canucks fans. However, his piece de resistance was when he confronted Calgary’s Bob Hartley. Players and staff literally dragged him away as he attempted to attack his opposite number.
Biela is a volatile genius. Many coaches, including Pep Guardiola, cite him as a profound influence. The Argentine is a visionary but is also very eccentric. One of his wackiest traits is sitting on a bucket during soccer games. He believes that this gives him a better view of the playing field. Meanwhile, he’s a cult hero in the city of Leeds.
While his tactics are innovative, he also attracts criticism. This is because many of his teams suffer burnout. Bielsa demands excessive amounts of running from his players. Furthermore, he has a history of fallouts with club front offices. Overall, soccer is an obsession for him. He doesn’t care about anything else.
Harbaugh became head coach of the Michigan Wolverines after his departure from the NFL. The former 49ers coach is as explosive as a jar of semtex. He has had feuds with several of his opposite numbers and shows no sign of cooling down. It doesn’t take much to set him off because he is such a volatile character.
The New York Giants felt the brunt of his fury when he accused them of attention-seeking. This was one of the kindest comments he made. Meanwhile, his temper tantrums are the stuff of legend. It’s impossible to write a publishable article about some of the things that he has said. Nobody likes Harbaugh when he’s angry.
Tarverdyan was incredibly lucky. Ronda Rousey walked through the doors of Glendale Fight Club and became a UFC champion. She ran through women in mere seconds as she used her armbar submission to great effect. The former Olympic judoka became a global superstar in the process. But questions remain about Tarverdyan’s influence.
Rousey’s final two fights saw her suffer back-to-back knockout losses. Meanwhile, Tarverdyan attracted massive criticism because of his coaching advice. He encouraged her to strike with Holly Holm, a former champion boxer. Meanwhile, his advice against Amanda Nunes was pointless. To sum up, his decision-making was some of the wackiest ever.
Singletary’s tenure in San Francisco was an unmitigated disaster. The former Niners head coach simply wasn’t suited for the job. One time he dropped his pants to show his players how badly they performed. This wasn’t even the wackiest decision he made. Singletary became a joke figure because of his crazy antics while leading the team.
His rants became infamous because he often savaged his players publicly. This didn’t endear him to members of his roster. In sum, Singletary was a disastrous hire. He stayed in charge of the team for too long and damaged his reputation because of this. It’s acceptable to criticize players. But Singletary took it too far.
Danaher is a different kind of crazy to others on this list. The New Zealand native moved to New York to pursue a Ph.D. in philosophy at Columbia University. He fell in love with Brazilian jiu-jitsu and became one of the leading coaches of the art on the planet. While he never competed, his teaching skills are clear because of his students’ success.
He trains the likes of Gordon Ryan, Georges St-Pierre, and many other elite martial artists. Danaher is one of the wackiest coaches because of his total dedication to BJJ. He always wears a rash guard regardless of the occasion. However, his eccentricity makes him brilliant. Few people possess a mind like his.
Magath is one of the wackiest soccer managers on the planet. However, his players don’t appreciate his crazy methods. After his teams lose, he forces his players to complete brutal running sessions. Meanwhile, he is also a harsh disciplinarian. In short, many of his former players loathe him and want him to fail.
He is also fond of unusual methods of recovery. When one Fulham player suffered an injury, the team’s fitness coach devised a special program for him. But Magath overruled his coach and ordered the player to eat cheese. This was because he heard that it had healing properties. In the end, both the player and coach left the team.
Cable has the appearance of an Eastern-European doorman. He’s a massive hulk of a man and an intimidating personality. The football coach built a career for himself in the NFL but has been involved in multiple controversies. During his time as head coach of the Oakland Raiders, he broke the jaw of one of his coaches.
Of course, working for the Raiders would be enough to drive anybody crazy. But breaking an assistant’s jaw is definitely the wackiest way of resolving a dispute. This is problematic but things got worse for Cable. The Raiders fired him after allegations of domestic violence emerged. However, this didn’t stop them from rehiring him as offensive line coach.
‘Fergie’ led Manchester United for 26 years and is the most successful coach in British history. He won 13 Premier Leagues and two Champions Leagues in a glittering career. Evidently, Ferguson had a brilliant mind but he wasn’t perfect. Firstly, he was notoriously grouchy and refused to talk to the media on many occasions. He also threw a cleat at David Beckham’s head in anger.
Meanwhile, he earned notoriety for his hairdryer treatment. This was where he vented his fury at an individual from the privacy of his office. One of the wackiest aspects of his career was the inability to reign in his venom. He regularly targeted referees and officials. Yet this often resulted in touchline bans for his troubles.
Kean University isn’t the most famous in the nation but its baseball program has attracted interest. Ioverio leads the Division III team and has achieved a lot of success with them. The coach stayed loyal to the team despite bigger programs’ interest. His methods are effective even if some of them are a bit crazy.
One of the wackiest saw Ioverio force his players to carry five-gallon canisters of Gatorade to games. He wanted his athletes to ensure that they had enough gas in their tanks. If this wasn’t strange enough, he also made them wear Incredible Hulk gloves. This was meant to symbolize their strength. But the important thing is that his players buy into his eccentric nature.
Many believe that Maradona was the greatest soccer player ever. Unfortunately, he also suffered intense drug and addiction issues throughout his life. Somehow, Argentina gave him the manager’s job because he is like a deity there. But he failed miserably because he didn’t have the tactical mind for the role. Great players don’t always make great coaches.
But this wasn’t the end of his career. Various Middle Eastern and South American teams hired him because of his sizable name value. Maradona was one of the wackiest managers in soccer history because of his fiery personality. He cursed at reporters during press conferences and also abused officials. But he was always entertaining.
‘Bountygate’ was one of the biggest NFL scandals of recent times. Williams was the mastermind behind this wackiest of schemes. It occurred while he was the defensive coordinator at the New Orleans Saints. In short, he promised bonuses to players who injured members of the opposition. Furthermore, he told them to target the head.
In an NFL world where concussions are in the spotlight, this didn’t fly. Williams received a suspension for his efforts. But former players at the Buffalo Bills claimed that he had a similar system in place there. Williams was like the league’s dumbest supervillain because he was incredibly immoral and brutal.
Del Rio is a familiar face in the NFL. He was the head coach of the Jaguars and the Raiders. Meanwhile, he was the defensive coordinator for a number of franchises. While he may not seem like an obvious candidate to make this list, there is a good reason for his inclusion. It comes down to one of the wackiest motivational attempts in the history of any sport.
In short, he put an axe and a tree stump in the Jacksonville locker room. The idea was that players should ‘keep chopping.’ However, his tactic went badly awry. This was because Chris Hanson accidentally chopped himself instead of the stump. The team rushed their punter to the hospital and nobody saw the axe again.
Mexico is one of soccer’s biggest underachievers. The Central American nation adores the sport but fails on an international level. It looked like Herrera was on course to change their fortunes. His passionate sideline antics at the 2014 World Cup attracted global attention. Meanwhile, Mexico visibly improved under his tenure.
But sometimes passion can be a dangerous attribute. Herrera discovered this the hard way after losing control on the sideline. He became embroiled in a dispute with a reporter. It ended with the coach physically assaulting the media member. As a result, Mexico fired its manager. It was the wackiest way for him to leave, but probably not that surprising.
No doubt it’s often tempting, but it’s a terrible idea for a coach to attack a player. Unfortunately, Hayes didn’t receive this memo. He did a superb job for Ohio State but it ended in tears. The brilliant college coach took out Clemson’s Charlie Bauman during the Gator Bowl. It was a stunning visual moment, but it ended Hayes’s coaching career.
While this was the most dramatic moment of his career, it wasn’t the wackiest. When Hayes lost games, he addressed the media from the locker room. The problem with this was that he was always naked. It took a strong stomach to ignore this. Also, he had fights with numerous members of the media and various officials.
Snyder was an excellent college coach. He spent his entire career at the NCAA level because he never felt the need to step into the pro-game. A Kansas State icon, he rejected the NFL because he wanted to mold young minds. This proved to be a great decision because the Wildcats even named their stadium after him and his family.
However, the best coaches are also obsessive and eccentric. Snyder was no different in this regard. One of his wackiest traits was his compulsive texting. He was in constant communication with his athletes. In fact, some of them rolled their eyes because they received messages every 20 minutes. But he was responsible for a great program in Kansas.
Italians maintain a fiery reputation. But Di Canio brought this to the next level. He was one of the most successful of his countrymen to play in the Premier League. Then, he became a manager. He had moderate success with Swindon Town in England’s lower leagues. But it all went wrong when he took over at Sunderland.
Firstly, he attracted criticism because of his links to fascism. One of his wackiest decisions was a tattoo of Mussolini on his back. He infamously raised his arm in a fascist salute to Lazio’s Ultra supporters. Then, players mutinied because he was so brutal in his criticism of them. They became tired of his antics and demanded a change.
NCAA basketball coaches are some of the craziest coaches out there. While many of them have a positive influence on their charges, others are insane. Rice was one of the most abusive college coaches in history. He coached Robert Morris before landing at Rutgers. That’s when a massive video scandal broke. The footage revealed his abusive nature toward his athletes.
The video revealed Rice throwing basketballs at his players’ heads. He also used homophobic slurs and got physical with his players. Finally, Rutgers suspended him and banned him from the campus. Remarkably, a Christian school in New York hired him after this. That’s one of the wackiest decisions on this list.
A three-time manager of the year, Piniella was an excellent MLB coach. But it’s impossible to deny that he has a volatile personality. Piniella led the Seattle Mariners for 10 years but also managed several other franchises. He suffered numerous ejections throughout his career because he constantly berated officials.
Piniella unleashed more explosions than North Korea and Iran combined. The manager even brawled with his own players. He famously fought Rob Dibble in one of the wackiest fights ever. Piniella didn’t play Dibble in a win over the Yankees. Dibble denied that he had an injury and Piniella called him a liar. Then, they scrapped in front of the media in a surreal scene.
Campbell became head coach of the Detroit Lions earlier in 2021. This wild man instantly became a media darling because of his crazy personality. First of all, he claimed that he pretended to be somebody else to get the interview. Then, he revealed that he wanted a real-life lion on the sidelines. Meanwhile, his intro speech was one of the wackiest ever.
The Lions are one of the most depressing franchises in American sports. While doubts remain about Campbell’s coaching ability, he has breathed new life into the team. “We’re gonna kick you in the teeth, and when you punch us back, we’re going to smile at you,” he said. “And when you knock us down, we’re gonna get up. And on the way up, we’re going to bite a kneecap off.” Well, alright.
France endured two Reigns of Terror. First, there was the French Revolution. Then, there was Domenech’s tenure in charge of the national soccer team. His time in charge was remarkably bad. Domenech’s methods were some of the wackiest in coaching history. Allegedly, he used astrology to help him pick teams and refused to pick Scorpios.
His team scraped a place in the 2010 World Cup. But then the entire squad went into meltdown as civil war erupted. He sent home star striker Nicolas Anelka. Then, he had an explosive feud with team captain Patrice Evra. It was volatile, messy, and humiliating. In the end, France crashed out in the group state. Domenech lost his job because it was a national shame.
Knight was a fiery man but a fantastic coach. An Indiana Hoosiers icon, Knight won three March Madness tournaments with his team. He also claimed an Olympic gold medal with Team USA and a whole host of other honors. However, he was very harsh toward his players and had a wild temper. Infamously, he once threw a chair across the court in anger.
Then there was the time that he allegedly choked one of his own athletes. Knight also had run-ins with the police on multiple occasions. Finally, Indiana let him go after another run-in with a student. His methods aged badly. But Knight was the best NCAA coach in the business while he was at his peak – that’s a fact.
Fabia is the wackiest combat sports coach of all-time. We use the word ‘coach’ loosely because his methods were bizarre and disturbing. The leader of ‘The School of Self-Awareness’ trained UFC fighter Diego Sanchez before it all went badly wrong. In one fight against Michael Pereira, Fabia told Sanchez, “Do not let him trigger you.”
Furthermore, his training methods were psychotic. Video footage emerged of Fabia punching and kicking Sanchez as he hung upside down from a beam. Later, Fabia explained that he hit Sanchez 20 times per day. Then, there were other insane practices. For example, Fabia once chased Sanchez around the ring with a knife. In the end, Sanchez cut ties with the weirdo.