Florida Gulf Coast coach leads unheralded team to improbable run

(CBS News) FORT MYERS, Fla. - Many will be watching the NCAA men's basketball tournament on CBS. But even non-fans can appreciate the story of a coach who is out to beat the exceptional odds.

Coach Andy Enfield has turned the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles into a Cinderella team of the NCAA men's basketball tournament.
CBS News

Even by his own rather lofty standards, Andy Enfield is having quite a week.

Enfield is the coach of the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles. No team ranked so low in the NCAA tournament has ever gone this far.

"You're in the final 16 teams in the country," Enfield told his team in the locker room. "When you started this year you were predicted to be in the bottom 16 in the country."

Coverage of the NCAA tournament on CBSSports.com

Asked what it felt like to be heading to the Sweet Sixteen and his players chanting his name after they recently won, Enfield replied: "It was just a great thrilling moment of my life."

Which is saying something since Andy Enfield has the kind of touch Midas would envy. He holds the NCAA record for foul shooting. Enfield spent four years as an assistant coach in the NBA in his 20's, before a short detour at a health care start up made him a millionaire.

Watch an interview with Andy Enfield on "CBS This Morning" below:

But basketball was still his passion. So he returned to coaching and got the job at Florida Gulf Coast two years ago.

And along the way, he married a fashion model.

"We both feel -- especially her -- the spotlight should be on our team and our university," said Enfield. "So we're somewhat embarrassed by a lot of the attention," he said.

As for whether this matches what he anticipated when was dreaming about this kind of thing, Enfield said: "I don't think you can ever anticipate what we're going through this week. I would never have even thought about this."

This week, Cinderella is a 43-year old gap-toothed basketball coach who's got sports fans wondering if this time around, glass slippers finally come in high tops.

  • Jim Axelrod

    Jim Axelrod is the anchor of the Saturday edition of the "CBS Evening News" and a national correspondent for CBS News, reporting for the "CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley" and other CBS News broadcasts.


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