Coaches on the hot seat; new coaches who will succeed, struggle

We have 24 new head coaches in Division I-A football. Some will succeed early. Some will struggle early.

Among veteran coaches, there are a number of who enter this season very much on the hot seat.

So with the start of  season just eight days away, it is a good time to look at our coaches on the hot seat, the new coaches who will succeed and the new coaches who will struggle.

This is  just one man’s opinion. If you have others to add to these lists, please do so:

 

FIVE VETERAN COACHES ON THE HOT SEAT

1. Rich Rodriguez, Michigan: The problem for Rich Rod is that regardless of how many games he wins, there are just a lot of people who don’t want him to be the coach at Michigan any more. NCAA investigations at both his current and former (West Virginia) employers don’t help Rodriguez with a proud Michigan fan base.

2. Dan Hawkins, Colorado: When Hawkins came to Boulder from Boise State, folks thought the Buffs would become a Big 12 force again. Instead they are 16-33 in five seasons. Colorado is going to the Pac-10 either in 2011 or 2012. Will Hawkins be the coach?

3. Ron Zook, Illinois: The Zooker got the Illini to a Rose Bowl in 2007 but things have not been good since with seasons of 5-7 and 3-9. He shook up his coaching staff in an effort to get back to a bowl. Another losing season could be Zook’s last in Champaign.

4. Les Miles, LSU: Normally, a guy who is 51-15 with a national championship (2007) doesn’t belong on this list. But the closer you get to the LSU program the more people try to convince me that Miles has to make something happen after going 8-8 in the SEC the past two seasons. He’s picked to finish fourth in the SEC West. A win over North Carolina on Sept. 4 is very important. Miles’ buyout, media reports have said, is about $16 million.

5. Dennis Erickson, Arizona State: Erickson, who won two national championships at Miami, led the Sun Devils to 10 wins and a share of the Pac-10 championship in his first season (2007) in Tempe. The past two seasons Arizona State has won a total of nine games. Erickson shook up his staff bringing in Noel Mazzone to install the spread offense. He needs a winning season.

FIVE NEW COACHES WHO WILL HAVE EARLY SUCCESS

1. Brian Kelly, Notre Dame: Based on what he did at Cincinnati and Central Michigan, Kelly is an offensive genius who really knows how to coach quarterbacks. I think the schedule is set up for 8-9 wins.

2. Lane Kiffn, USC: Depth and recruiting are going to be issues down the road for Kiffin but the Trojans could still win a lot of games this season. In fact, I’m looking at 9 or 10 wins on that schedule.

3. Jimbo Fisher, Florida State: No one questions the offense, which returns a veteran line and a Heisman Trophy candidate at quarterback (Christian Ponder). A Sept. 11 trip to Oklahoma should tell us a lot. I have Florida State winning the ACC’s Atlantic Division over Clemson.

4. Skip Holtz, South Florida: Holtz has proven what he can do with a mobile quarterback and he has a good one in B.J. Daniels. Road trips to Florida, Miami and West Virginia will temper expectations but the Bulls can be a factor in the Big East.

5. Butch Jones, Cincinnati: Jones takes over for Brian Kelly, who won a pair of Big East championships.  The Bearcats won’t win the conference again but they will continue to be very competitive with a proven quarterback in Zach Collaros..

FIVE NEW COACHES WHO WILL STRUGGLE

1. Derek Dooley, Tennessee: Dooley inherited a bad situation that has gotten progressively worse with injuries and other issues. The schedule is brutal. Five wins would be a very good season.

2. Tommy Tuberville, Texas Tech: Tuberville will try to change the culture established by Mike Leach, which means Tubs will try to run the ball and play better defense. In the short term this has a chance to be ugly until Tuberville can get his recruits in place.

3. Mike London, Virginia: London won a Division I-AA championship at Richmond but begins his time at Virignia with a roster that is very, very thin. The Cavaliers are in the ACC Coastal, which will be one of the toughest divisions in football.

4. Robbie Caldwell, Vanderbilt: Caldwell got the job when Bobby Johnson suddenly retired in July. The Commodores were going to struggle this season regardless of who was the coach. Nine of the 12 teams on the schedule went to bowls last season.

5. Turner Gill, Kansas: The Jayhawks are only three years removed from a 12-1 season and an Orange Bowl appearance. But the former head coach at Buffalo has a lot of work to do to get Kansas back in the mix in the Big 12 North, which is pretty weak this year.

 

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342 comments Add your comment

what?

August 25th, 2010
12:25 pm

Auburn’s D is still not where they want it to be and where they expect it to be. Bama should be able to do enough to win the division with Auburn and LSU battling it out for 2nd. I’m not jumping on the Arky train. I just don’t think they have enough overall talent to win the West. I think the winner of UGA/UF will represent the East.

jumbeauxtiger

August 25th, 2010
12:35 pm

404

“The 2010 UNC team is MUCH BETTER at almost every position
than the 2010 LSU team.”

Much better? You really are drunk or are you just stupid?

crackhead bee

August 25th, 2010
12:35 pm

the litmus test for cmr is beating the bees, right?
just don’t come to big A partying, bro. that will get you run off……..

yourdumb

August 25th, 2010
12:39 pm

jumbeauxtiger, you are an idiot. the tigerd went 3-5 in the sec in 2008, and 5-3 in 2009. 3 wins + 5 wins = 8 wins, 5 losses + 3 losses = 8 losses. so, if you do some
simple addition, in 2008 and 2009 combined, the tigerd went 8-8 in the sec. learn math.

what?

August 25th, 2010
12:50 pm

I think the winner of UGA/UF will represent the East. what? you must be a rocket scientist!

gcs

August 25th, 2010
12:52 pm

Skip Holtz lateral move from East Carolina to South Florida still puzzles me.
That said, South Florida has lost QB Matt Grothe and RB Mike Ford. They will struggle on O.
Additionally, Jim Leavitt was up to some shady things. Don’t be surprised of NCAA officials are snooping around campus this fall if not already.

.

Vol Fan in Ga

August 25th, 2010
12:59 pm

5 wins for the Vols would be good? 5 wins would be anything BUT good. 6 wins would be ok, 7 wins would be good, and 8 or 9 wins would be great.

The schedule includes 5 probable wins with UT-Martin, UAB, Memphis, Vandy and UK.

It also contains 5 possible wins with Oregon, LSU, UGA, USC and Ole Miss.

Only 2 games, UF and Bama, that are virtual losses.

UT’s weakness this year are along both of lines of scrimmage, but outside of that, they still have a talented roster of starters and backups. People are not giving the Vols enough respect. Let’s remember, we’re only 1 season removed from a 45-19 shellacking of the UGA Bulldogs.

DZ

August 25th, 2010
1:02 pm

You UGA fans need to understand something about Finebaum: he hates everyone. He loves to stir up controversy. Don’t give him a second thought.

As for Mark Richt, Alabama and Florida fans are THRILLED that you fans support him so much because he is no threat to them alternately winning the SEC every year. How can you be satisfied with 10 wins and a trip to a runner-up bowl every year?!

Redneck wifebeater

August 25th, 2010
1:06 pm

DZ, we love corch Richt because he has that Helen Hunt look-a-like goin on.

dagnabit

August 25th, 2010
1:09 pm

Don’t know what happened to Rich Rodriquez. I thought he would do great at Mich. I’m not a Lane Kiffin basher but I don’t see him winning big at USC. Tommy Tuberville will win anywhere. Les Miles will win at LSU and if those folks don’t want him ,a lot of schools will be glad to take him off LSU’s hands.

hammerhead

August 25th, 2010
1:24 pm

Pimiento cheese on white, lightly toasted… outstanding.

5IML

August 25th, 2010
1:34 pm

Maybe this is Rich Rod’s comeuppance for using BAMA to get a raise (and other considerations) from WVU. I guess the joke’s on him now.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
1:42 pm

5IML,

Thank God RichRod turned us down after initialling accepting the job. BTW, did you say that 3rd string tailback Eddie Lacy outrushed both Ingram and Richardson in the last scrimmage. This guy is gonna be good and they’ve been saying that for awhile. The dynamic duo just became the 3 headed monster.

5IML

August 25th, 2010
1:52 pm

Yep, one BAMA fan site is calling it the “Jumbo Package” when Lacy’s in there. That term brings back memories of Shula days.

If Rich Rod was our coach, we would be favored to win the SEC this year but we would not have won it last year or the year before. It’s not hard to win at BAMA. Every coach since The Bear has had at least one 10-win season. Even Dubose won the SEC, and he wasn’t good enough to coach Northview (Dothan).

zeeeee Nachos aka the "Living Legend"

August 25th, 2010
2:01 pm

Thank goodness b*tch Rodriguez said no to Alabama !

SecGuy

August 25th, 2010
2:05 pm

When Bama loses two games, which is possible, Finebaum will be calling for Saban’s head. He’s nothing but a snake and I’ve seen no indication he really knows anything about football. Anyone who takes him seriously is someone I would worry about.
Richt is the best coach Georgia ever had, in my lifetime anyway. If he had been athletic director like Dooley who was able to engineer his own schedule for success, he would have a much better record. But since Dooley retired, the SEC’s schedule rotation now forces all schools to play on a regular basis plus the SECCG makes championships much tougher to come by. If I were a Georgia fan, I would be very reluctant to run him off unless I was absolutely sure I could get a better one.

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
2:13 pm

C’mon, Dawg Nation, put your money where your mouths are!
Fill Sanford Stadium next Saturday!

why? why? why?

August 25th, 2010
2:15 pm

Coachs with heat turned to 400 degrees:

Rich Rodriquez
Les Miles
Dennis Erickson

300 Degrees
George Oleary
Grantham- defensive coordinator
Mike Bobo- offensive Coordinator

250 degrees

Mark Richt
Derrick Dooley

How long will these UGA fans stand by and temper there anger if UGA lose to USC early, Florida, and Auburn….? The temperature and recruiting losses will be turned up.

Mark

why? why? why?

August 25th, 2010
2:16 pm

should be “their” anger..

john

August 25th, 2010
2:16 pm

I think another one for the hot seat could be Houston Nutt. I’m sure bringing in Masoli looked good on paper but it’s got to be killing his support and recruiting.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
2:17 pm

And the living legend nachos makes his appearance. Too funny watching nachos flame Rich Rod. Its usually the au or uga fans that get his daily flame

The General Feeling

August 25th, 2010
2:17 pm

Tony, you can’t spell struggle without a U and a G. Perhaps we should change the spelling to strugal. Mutts have NFL talent every season yet find a way, somwhow, to underachieve. Don’t be surprised if it happens again this year.

Oh and, one of the five wins for Tennessee will be in Athens, GA…

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
2:18 pm

BTW, Bama fans, even in the limited 3 year yenure I had in Birmingham, I understood Feinbaum is the Niel Boortz of sports radio!

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
2:20 pm

john,

You’re probably right. Ole Miss never should have gotten rid of a fine coach like Cutcliffe to begin with. Nevertheless if Ole Miss wins with Masoli at the helm all the Masoli controversy will be forgotten. Winning will do that.

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
2:20 pm

Sorry.
“tenure”

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
2:24 pm

G8R GRAD,

He was universally hated by Bama fans and I’m sure he will be again. About the only thing I agree with him on is that we both like watching Spurrier needle people.

One of the dumbest articles Slimebaum wrote a couple months ago was that we should boot Carolina and Ark saying they add nothing to the sec. Ark which has a good football history, which has won numerous track championships, which has won the division several times showing it can compete, which won a b-ball nc. And Carolina which just won the baseball nc and has fielded decent if not great football and bball teams. Idiotic article it was

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
2:24 pm

The only thing larger than Feinbaum’s ego is his waistline!

DawginLex

August 25th, 2010
2:39 pm

UGA 31
UT 10

You can go ahead and get ready.
Richt is going to lower the boom on Derek

It’s gonna make 41-14 seem like a good dream instead of the nightmare that it was.

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
2:42 pm

Tide:

I’m sorry.
I cannot agree with you about Masoli.
I think it casts more than a shadow on Ole Miss’ priorities.
Bad move.
Wins or not.

Dumbo

August 25th, 2010
3:00 pm

Sure are a lot know it alls on this here site….must be all them North Ave/Mid Town Boys in Drag…that said, will all you peckerwoods please understand that Mark Richt ain’t on no seat…we Dawg fans understand getting your butt kick regularly don’t go down good…ah, mean taste good…look at what them Reptiles been doing to us for the 20 years…but all you Boys wanting Richt out of town better just keep on crying…cause the butt kicking will continue.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
3:02 pm

G8R GRAD,

I’m not saying that I agree with Nutt bringing in Masoli. I’m just saying that if Ole Miss has a successful season with Masoli at the helm that Ole Miss people will forget all about the controversy. Most fan bases would for that matter. And if he stays out of trouble then people will inevitably say that he redeemed himself and deserved the 2nd chance.

Who is your coach going to be

August 25th, 2010
3:04 pm

The question for LSU is “who would you get”. There are only a couple of Sabans and Meyers in the world and most of the have fat contracts already. You do not want to make the mistakes Michigan and Notre Dame made. At leat with miles you know who you have. He may be crazy but if you give him the right players he can win games.

Sanford Stadium

August 25th, 2010
3:07 pm

Where you find trash

anonymous

August 25th, 2010
3:08 pm

dumbo,

Your name is very befitting.

5IML

August 25th, 2010
3:08 pm

Who,

ND had no choice. The Little Tuna was a horrible head coach. I agree with you on Michigan but they were under pressure due to Ohio State’s success. Hopefully, UGA will not make the same mistake because of Florida.

Sanford Stadium

August 25th, 2010
3:09 pm

Tons of trash just looking at the ajc pics of all dat trash

RxDawg

August 25th, 2010
3:09 pm

Tide Rising, I saw that article. I was floored. I can’t remember which two teams he though should replace them, but I want to say it was Memphis and Louisville or something like that. I think that was the article that made me realize what kind of “reporter” he was.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
3:15 pm

16 million dollar buyout for Miles? That’s an ungodly number. I was shocked at the ND buyout of Weis but I don’t think that was anywhere near 16 million. And I think Tubbs buyout at AU was only like 2 million just a couple years ago.

5IML,

The little tuna. That’s pretty funny. Never heard him called that. I read some stories on ESPN about Weiss on the recruiting trail and dealing with the ND admin. This was a man of incredible arrogance that rubbed a lot of people at ND the wrong way and a lot of high school coaches. Can’t say I felt sorry for the guy and I was delighted to see Mich state beat them after Weiss said he and his ND staff could never lose to the staff over at Mich state.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
3:21 pm

Rxdawg,

Floored would be an apt description. Probably most of us that read that article by Finebaum would have been floored. As a matter of fact the more I think about it I think you are correct and that Memphis was one of the 2 he talked about replacing Ark with.

And Memphis is dead broke- they don’t draw and their program is in some serious financial trouble, facilities are horribly lacking also. Ark. is the flagship school and like LSU its just Ark as the big boy in the state. Lots of financial support also from the Walton family of Walmart and from Tyson Foods. If everyone read that one article they would realize what an imbecile Slimebaum can be.

jumbeauxtiger

August 25th, 2010
3:25 pm

yourdumb:

“Jumbeauxtiger, you are an idiot. the tigerd went 3-5 in the sec in 2008, and 5-3 in 2009. 3 wins + 5 wins = 8 wins, 5 losses + 3 losses = 8 losses. so, if you do some
simple addition, in 2008 and 2009 combined, the tigerd went 8-8 in the sec. learn math.”

I said that 8-8 is misleading. The context being that LSU improved from 3-5 in 2008 to 5-3 in 2009.

You are telling me that I can’t add when you use “your” for “you’re”?

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
3:25 pm

Nomination for most appropriate use of quotation marks:

” I think that was the article that made me realize what kind of “reporter” he was.”

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
3:27 pm

yourdumb:

Jumbeaux may not be a gator, but you’ll have to take both of us before I allow you to disparage his good name!

RxDawg

August 25th, 2010
3:27 pm

Engrish classes are thataway ———–>

jumbeauxtiger

August 25th, 2010
3:35 pm

Thanks G8R.

Tide Rising, Miles’ buyout is $15 mil. Yes it’s alot of money but that won’t prevent a change being made if necessary.

how2fish

August 25th, 2010
3:35 pm

16 million dollar buyout for Miles? The entire athletic department of Louisiana State must be on crack..16 million for Les?? Hell if I was him I’d be trying to lose games !

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
3:36 pm

Rx:

Isn’t it:

Engrish classes are “attaway ——–>?”

G8R GRAD

August 25th, 2010
3:37 pm

De nada, mi buen amigo!

Dumbo

August 25th, 2010
3:43 pm

anonymous – you must be one of them there North Ave/Mid Town Boys in Drag ain’t you

jumbeauxtiger

August 25th, 2010
3:44 pm

how2fish,

Don’t blame LSU’s entire athletic department. That was done by Skip Bertman. He was a great baseball coach but in my opinion was not a very good businessman.

Tide Rising

August 25th, 2010
3:46 pm

Jumbeaux,

I’ll second G8R GRAD, If the dude doesn’t get the context of what you were saying about the improvement then he just isn’t worthy of a response from you. Ignore him.

15 million dollar buyout? Wow! Personally I don’t even think he should be on the hot seat. He led LSU at one point to 3 consecutive 11 win seasons. That is incredibly difficult in this age of parity.

A couple of down years because a couple of 5 star qb prospects don’t live up to the hype doesn’t mean he should be on the chopping block. And the clock management mistakes- 1) Every coach makes an inexplicable mistake or 2 and 2) The qb is also partially responsible for some of the woes. Can’t put it all on Miles.