Thursday, October 16, 2014

Coaches on the Hot Seat

As we head into the mid part of the 2014 season, seats all around college football have begun to heat up. Jeff Quinn was the latest victim this week, as Buffalo fired him after a ten point loss to a miserably bad Eastern Michigan club. With Quinn skipping the Dead Pool and heading right to the drain, let us take a look at who else is feeling some heat this week...

Trent Miles, Georgia State
Sure, the Panther offense has been immensely better in 2014, but the defense is still largely a drifting wreck on the waters of the game, and someone has to either patch it up or sink it. Staff changes could be inevitable if Miles survives, but long term, this hire doesn't look tenable.

Bobby Hauck, UNLV
Hauck's stay in Sin City has largely been a major mess, not that he ever inherited anything worth working with from the Mike Sanford regime. Hauck, who was largely successful in the FCS world at Montana, hasn't got it clicking in the desert. The Rebels are just 2-5 after beating Fresno State last weekend, and would have to go on a major run to get back to a bowl, and that's not likely to happen.

Doug Martin, New Mexico State
I know what expectations are here. They are exceedingly low. Martin gets a certain amount of benefit from me for simply taking this go nowhere job. However, even at a chronic doormat program like this one, wins have to come sooner or later. I'm not asking for Sun Belt titles here, and nobody is, but a bowl or a .500 record would work. Nothing is happening here, and it's not likely to under Martin.

Clint Bowen, Kansas
Bowen is getting a bunch of support for hanging onto the job in 2015 after being named the interim following the departure of Charlie Weis. That being said, Bowen still has not won a game yet, despite hanging with Oklahoma State last weekend. Bowen has some proving to do, and it's not happening for me. I still think that this is Ed Orgeron's job in 2015.

Curtis Johnson, Tulane
I read something that cracked me up last week. someone actually tried to give Johnson credit that the football stadium got built. He may have helped the effort in some way, but he was hardly the centerpiece to the project. A year after a bowl game, Johnson has promptly opened his new stadium with a 2-5 record.

Kliff Kingsbury, Texas Tech
Mr. GQ certainly has had his fair share at a bad run this season, and the movie star smile isn't fooling anyone anymore. I believe that he is in over his head in Lubbock, and Tech made a foolish hire based on his work as an assistant, when he should have gotten his feet wet at a smaller program before jumping into the Big 12. Kevin Sumlin isn't missing hi, much on his staff.

Paul Rhoades, Iowa State
Long term, once again, is what I am referring to here. ISU is now 2-4 after beating Toledo last weekend, but the Cyclones seem to be stuck in neutral and are stalling out. Big 12 play in half two of the season could get brutal.

Larry Fedora, North Carolina
The Heels had top 15 aspirations at the start of the season and Marquise Williams was the toast of the QB landscape. UNC is now 2-4, and Williams can't even be the full time starter in a two QB system. Seems like nothing is working as it should.

Bob Davie, New Mexico
Davie is just another coach at a program that has never known sustained success. The Lobos are now 2-4, and the second half looks difficult. Could Davie be yet another fired Lobo coach in December? Could be.

Tommy Tuberville, Cincinnati
He won't be gone this season, but the Bearcats were supposed to make a run at an AAC title and top 25 ranking this season with new QB Gunner Kiel. Kiel is doing his part mostly, but the Bearcats are still 2-3. I see Tuberville is still holding on to his underachiever status as a head coach.

Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
Granted, the Wildcats have improved in recent weeks, but are still just 3-3 with the deepest part of their league schedule coming up. The Wildcats will likely need to hit 6-6 and a bowl bid, or else that dreaded post season evaluation could be full of awful choices for Fitz.

Tony Levine, Houston
The Cougars were supposed to be a mid major power this fall, but haven't gotten off of the ground in their new stadium. Add to that fact is the issue with John O'Korn, a sophomore pre-season candidate for All-Bilo QB in both the national and AAC race, who has absolutely bottomed out and regressed in year two under Levine's watch. That never happened when Kevin Sumlin was coach.

Butch Jones, Tennessee
I love how Vols fans love to throw their recruiting rankings in my face every time I criticize the program, but where is that productivity out of those classes? I am sure a 3-3 record at the midway point of 2014 was exactly what you expected to get out of those hot shot recruits, right? Recruiting is overrated. Chemistry and coaching is everything, and right now, the Vols are sinking in a winnable SEC East.

Kevin Wilson, Indiana
This ha got to be the season that the Hoosiers break 6-6 and get to a bowl. If they miss that mark (they sit currently at 3-3), then they will have made no progress from last season as a program. Wilson came in highly regarded, but it's been a middling tenure at best. Time for a surge.

Paul Chryst, Pittsburgh
A lot of folks like Chryst a lot, and despite the turmoil he came in under, he has held it together modestly, but that time is gone now, and the Panthers need to turn a corner. They are in the ACC, not the SEC, so this middle of the road routine has got to stop.

Coaches on the Bubble
Rocky Long, San Diego State
Todd Berry, UL-Monroe
Dan Enos, Central Michigan
David Bailiff, Rice
Al Golden, Miami
Will Muschamp, Florida

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