Monday, November 23, 2015

Coaches on the Hot Seat: Week 13

There are currently 12 jobs open in FBS football, and LSU could be a 13th next week, if not sooner. With so much firing going on, one has to assume that there could be more, but some schools could elect to wait another season. This post is about coaches who could go either way as we rapidly approach the end of the season...

Paul Johnson, Georgia Tech
I don't see Johnson going, but nobody can claim that this season didn't end up being one huge dumpster fire. The Yellowjackets were a top ten team to start the season in many polls, and then the wheels came off before the wreck even got out of the first month. Tech simply wasn't as good as they were cracked up to be, and Johnson can be squarely blamed for that. There may be considerable heat on him in 2016.

Tommy Tuberville, Cincinnati
Tuberville is another coach likely safe until next season, but they too largely underperformed on expectations this season. Tuberville has never been one of the great coaches, and this season was just one example. Look for there to be more heat on him next season.

Charlie Strong, Texas
All of the Miami rumors have not been helping matters as Strong tries to rebuild the Longhorns. He keeps shutting the rumors down, and he is getting plenty of public support from the interim AD, but how long will that last if the results don't get better once a permanent AD is named?

Dana Holgorsen, West Virginia
How long will 5th place finishes be ok in Morgantown? WVU has not competed with the top dogs in the Big 12 since joining, and finishing in the middle of the pack or lower is not what WVU had in mind when they joined. Demands will be high next season.

Mike Riley, Nebraska
Having to beat Iowa for a 6th win to get bowl eligible in the final week is never a popular thing in Lincoln, and despite all the bad breaks, most Husker fans likely privately wish Bo Pelini was still around. Riley was a strange fit when he was named coach at Nebraska, so I am guessing after the train wreck that this season became, he won't get a long leash next fall.

Bill Cubit, Illinois (Interim)
He wants the job full time, and if Illinois ends up bowling, maybe he should get it. I believe, however, that Illinois will not make a call on Cubit until they have had a good chance to wade through the waters of who is available, and if they can land someone splashier, Cubit will be out. Stay tuned.

Kevin Wilson, Indiana
If Indian beats Purdue, they will go bowling, but that still may not be enough for Wilson to keep his job. More was expected when Wilson was hired, and he has had five years to get it done, and 6-6 has become the peak, again, if they beat Purdue. I'd give it 50% of a chance that Wilson coaches the Hoosiers next fall.

Rick Stockstill, Middle Tennessee
If there is one thing that he does well, it's getting the Blue Raiders to .500 and keeping them there for long periods of time. That's not enough these days, and attendance suffered this season. His act has gotten stale here, so it may make the most sense for both sides to move on.

Ron Turner, FIU
This is a huge back and forth for me. Turner hasn't done a great job with the Panthers, and the season ended with a 5-7 record. There has to be a ton of thinking going on about what to do here, but if Turner were to go, and he may, maybe the Panthers should consider Kerwin Bell of Jacksonville as a replacement.

Larry Coker, UTSA
I am guessing that Coker can pretty much dictate terms of how and when he leaves at this point, and I have written plenty on the subject in the last two weeks. The storm has seemingly quieted down with two consecutive wins, but how much longer Coker wants to do this is anyone's guess right now.

David Bailiff, Rice
Much like Stockstill at MTSU, Bailiff has done a good job of getting Rice to somewhere in the middle, and then surging up and down from there every year. He has been anything but consistent, and the fan base, what there is of it, may be done riding the roller coaster. This program could be better than this.

Sean Kugler, UTEP
Kugler was moving the needle a year ago, but the needle went back the other way in 2015. The Miners cannot seem to build momentum, and that could cost Kugler in 2016 if more of the same happens again.

Jeff Monken, Army
Monken will be fine until next season. He had a young team, but to answer a comment criticizing me for giving Larry Coker a break for having a young team, Army isn't a start up program. Rich Ellerson was a good coach coming into Army, and he didn't get any slack for that either. Monken has got to find a way to win, because Army is now worse than all of the service academy schools, including even The Citadel.

Pete Lembo, Ball State
Lembo is moving in the wrong direction, and while there is no buzz about him going anywhere right now, word on the street is telling me that he has next year to get it going or he will be gone.

Chris Creighton, Eastern Michigan
He looked like he was moving the dial early on, but before the end of September, it was all back to gloom for EMU. He will be in year three next fall, and it will be time to show results.

Chuck Martin, Miami (Ohio)
Like Creighton, Martin is rebuilding a toxic waste dump. Also like Creighton, better results must be seen to be able to continue to work the rebuild.

Tim DeRuyter, Fresno State
This program has plummeted since two years ago. DeRuyter will likely get one more season to try to get the program moving again, but that is it.

Mike MacIntyre, Colorado
He has already been given another season, as there were some strides made in 2015. MacIntyre has one more season to get this program moving, and it will be bowl or bust in 2016.

Bret Bielema, Arkansas
I give him credit for getting his team back in the second half of this season, but that start was abysmal. This is the SEC, where Les Miles is getting fired for a 132-31 record. How much longer do you think that 6-6 or 5-7 every year will hold up in Hog Country?

Gus Malzahn, Auburn
They fired Gene Chizek a year out from winning a national title. Auburn is in last place in the SEC West. Malzahn gets one more season, and that is it.

Mark Richt, Georgia
He may go this offseason. Richt has been fairly average at UGA, and is seeking an elusive SEC title out of a very weak Eastern Division. How hard should this be?

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