Friday, November 8, 2013

Coaches on the Hot Seat

It's no November, and we're heading into the stretch run, and the seats just get hotter from here for several college coaches around the country. Let's take a look at our weekly tracker to see who's feeling the heat once again in week 11...

June Jones, SMU
The Mustangs enter this week's road trip at 3-4, and they are 8.5 point dogs to boot. Cincinnati seems to be heating up at the right time, which could be bad news for Jones and SMU. Every game is a must win now, and failure to reach a bowl would be bad news for Jones.

Jim Grobe, Wake Forest
The Deacons sit at 4-5 entering this week, and with leading receiver Michael Campanaro out of the season, it doesn't look good for Grobe. The Deacons must win two of their final three games to qualify for a bowl, and I am not seeing a good chance of that happening.

Randy Edsell, Maryland
At this point, the Terps are 5-3, and need just one win to hit a bowl. That will likely keep Edsell around for another season, but the Terps have been bad since the beginning of October. ACC play has been brutal, and you can't blame injury for all of it. Edsell can get to a bowl, but the heat will be much more intense in 2014, as he will have to build off of his successes that 2013 did manage to bring. A complete collapse, however, between now and the end of the season could have the administration thinking differently.

Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
Before you wonder about what I am smoking, realize that I am not saying that he's going anywhere. What I am saying is that this year has been a huge disappointment in the midst of a five game losing streak dating back to that unfortunate loss at home against Ohio State. Fitzgerald has some damage to control, and next season is going to see eyes upon him like never before, even if they do love him in Evanston.

Charlie Weis, Kansas
Kansas hasn't won a Big 12 game since Nebraska and Colorado were still in the conference, and I don't see that changing anytime soon. We are heading into the end of Weis' second season in Lawrence. His Hot Seat status will carry over into 2014, which will be a make or break year. So far, it's been all break and broken.

Garrick McGee, UAB
If you've been looking for a light at the end of the tunnel in Birmingham, you are still as blind as can be in the dark, because there has been little spark out of McGee's Blazers. Next season will bring some expectations, and they will be high (yeah, six wins would be high).

Ron Turner, FIU
Some would say that the Dead Pool would be more a home for Turner these days, but here's why he's not going anywhere. FIU would still be paying the bill for both Mario Chritsobal and Turner of they fired him now, and money is not flush at FIU. Turner comes back for 2014, but it's anyone's guess what happens beyond that.

Bill Blankenship, Tulsa
It may be a little knee jerk to put too much on Blankenship right now, but the farther into his tenure he gets, the worse it seems to be. I was hard on this hire, because other than being an inside guy when he was brought on, I felt he brought little else to the table. It's starting to look as if I was right.

Rich Ellerson, Army
Sometime bringing a guy into the program just because he has ties doesn't work. Ellersen is an Army guy through and through, and of course he no longer has Trent Steelman triggering his wishbone offense, but seriously, Army was supposed to be better, and losing to Air Force last week to drop to 3-6 is just crap.

Dan Enos, Central Michigan
Enos started to get some play from his guys the last few weeks, but Ball State made it clear once again as to how bad the Chippewas have been under Enos. He has taken all of the progress made under Brian Kelly and Butch Jones, and flushed it right down the toilet. One more loss, and it's the Dead Pool for certain.

Dave Christensen, Wyoming
Christensen may be closer to Dead Pool than Hot Seat, as the Cowboys took a red hot start and squandered it in October to sit at 4-4. With Fresno State on the docket this week, it looks as if 4-5 is a very real situation. A missed bowl game, and Christensen takes a swim in the Dead Pool.

Troy Calhoun, Air Force
Back to back wins over Army and New Mexico (especially Army) has reduced the heat factor some for Calhoun, but the Falcons will have to show real progress to finish the season, and get a hot start in 2014 for him to last much longer. Air Force is better than this, or should be.

Will Muschamp, Florida
He is not well thought of in Gainesville, or just about anywhere right now, and Florida sitting at 404 is rather Zook-esque. Muschamp has the favor of a hot season in 2012 that he can parlay into another season, unless, of course, they find a way to lose more than two more games to close out 2013. It is possible.

Dan Mullen, Mississippi State
They really believed that they got a steal when they hired Mullen away from Florida, but it's been the same old crap in Starkville since Mullen came onboard. The Bulldogs are sitting at 4-4 right now, but it was supposed to get better, not stay stagnant, and it certainly has grown stale at MSU. Growth or development must be shown to close out 2013.

Larry Blakeney, Troy
Although Blakeney has been at Troy for forever, the program has failed to take the opportunities that a QB like Corey Robinson should have given it, and the days of Troy dominance in the Sun Belt are long past. The Trojans are just 5-5, and if they miss a bowl, Blakeney could make the Dead Pool list.

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