He’s on the road back to redemption and he had one of the greatest firings of all-time, being shitcanned on an airport tarmac while at USC. Nice! I love stories like that.
It’s HOT SEAT TIME! Last year, two of my four top selections and three of my top six were sent packing. Unfortunately some coaches (like Craig Bohl) made me look like a fool by being really successful. Thanks a lot Craig. Like the haircut though.
Alright, here we go with the list. I have ordered this (like last year) from most likely to be in the unemployment line to least likely:
Almost Guaranteed Shitcanning
- Paul Haynes (Kent State) – He was #4 on my list last season. How he kept his job is beyond me. He just was put into a bad situation when he had to replace Darrell Hazell (who went on to do sweet fuck all at Purdue himself). Needed to keep his job – A god damn miracle. Prediction – Mid-season shitcanning and perhaps a year off of coaching altogether.
- Lance Leipold (Buffalo) – Let’s stay in the MAC shall we? Leipold came into much fanfare (well as much as you can get in the MAC). He had guided Wisconsin-Whitewater to what seemed like a bajillion D-III titles. His first year in Buffalo showed promise. This past season not so much. I can’t see this ending well for Sir Lance-a-not-so-much. Needed to keep his job – vying for bowl eligibility in the final weekend. Prediction – Scraping the bottom of the MAC barrel and heading back to FCS at the highest (if not back to D-III).
- Todd Graham (Arizona State) – I remember when this guy liked to hop from job to job because he could. He was a good head coach and many programs wanted to have him. Now he will be hopping to his next job but not of his own volition. Needed to keep his job – Bowl eligibility and a victory over Arizona. Prediction – 3 wins and who really cares at that point if the Sun Devils beat the Wildcats or not (see below for the reason why).
- Kliff Kingsbury (Texas Tech) – Looks matter. How do I know? Well, many things in my life that I won’t get into now. Also, Kute Kliff Kingsbury. Here’s a guy who hit his high point halfway through his first season in Lubbock and is still around. Why? If it’s not his looks he must have damning photos of the athletic director in a compromising position. Needed to keep his job – Some semblance of defense from his squad. Prediction – Thousands of female college football fans crying and taking his offensive acumen to the FCS.
- Sean Kugler (UTEP) – He was good for a soundbite or three when UTEP was good that one season. Well, good enough in a Conference USA kind of way. Since then, El Paso has once again become a college football outpost that no one wants to be in. Needed to keep his job – bowl eligibility. Prediction – I can’t see them winning more than one game so this may happen during the season rather than wait for the misery to be over.
- Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M) – He seems to be on this list a lot. But he is never in the almost-guaranteed-to-be-fired part. He just hasn’t seemed to recreate the magic when Johnny Manziel was around. And yes, a big part was Gianni Party’s play but Sumlin had done wonders in Houston and appeared to be doing them in College Station. That may not be the case anymore. Needed to keep his job – 9 wins and be at least on the cusp of contending in the SEC West. Prediction – 7 wins and the top Group of Five opening next season for Mr. Sumlin.
- Mark Whipple (UMass) – When is UMass heading back to FCS? Whenever it is, I can’t foresee Coach Whipple being there when it happens. Needed to keep his job – at least 4 wins and to stay competitive in more games. Prediction – 2 wins and a quiet exit.
- Rich Rodriguez (Arizona) – Remember what I said above about Todd Graham? I think RichRod is also in a hot seat but not nearly as hot as T-Graham’s. No improvement in the desert may seal his fate though. Needed to keep his job – being better than Arizona State. Prediction – will not be better than Arizona State…and will be fired for it (along with many other reasons).
- Brian Kelly (Notre Dame) – Kelly suffers from two things: 1) the Irish got to the national championship not too long ago and 2) the expectations in South Bend are ALWAYS at least 10 wins. If he wasn’t such an insufferable prick at times I would feel sorry for him. Needed to keep his job – 10 wins. Did you not just read what I typed? Prediction – 8 wins and I am sure he will yell at at least one player in plain view of a camera in front of a national audience.
- David Beaty (Kansas) – Poor Dave Beaty. Does he really have a chance in Lawrence to do anything except maybe (MAYBE) win four games at most? I fail to see how he can win more with the state the program is. God, I wish there was promotion/relegation. Needed to keep his job – 4 wins. Prediction – Half of that. Or 2 wins for the less mathematically inclined. Again, Poor Dave.
- Lovie Smith (Illinois) – This isn’t the NFL, Lovie. I think he understands that now. An unenviable task in Champaign to turn around a program that has had little success in the past two decades (save the crazy 2007 season). Needed to keep his job – 4 wins but be competitive and look like they could be a bowl team next year. Prediction – 3 wins and the AD is going to have to take a long, hard look as to whether to retain Lovie or not.
- Bret Bielema (Arkansas) – The SEC is still a gauntlet. Saying that, the SEC is not known for a ton of coaching turnover. One or two each season usually. Bielema has a tough task ahead as the SEC West especially is difficult to say the least. Needed to keep his job – Stay in the middle of the pack in the SEC West and at least scare one of Bama, Auburn, or LSU. Prediction – 7 wins and at least some fans calling for his firing.
- Steve Addazio (Boston College) – This is the exact same spot Steve-O was in last year. And he came through with a 7-win season that led BC fans to still call for his head. Guy can’t catch a break! Needed to keep his job – Get to bowl eligibility again and hope the fans calm down a bit. Prediction – 4 wins and it will be tough not to move way up this list next year.
- David Bailiff (Rice) – I remember when he was consistently getting the Owls to bowl games. I also remember when the Owls were in the Southwest Conference. Times change. Sometimes coaches have to as well. But maybe not quite yet with Mr. Bailiff. Needed to keep his job – some sense of improvement from last year’s down season. Prediction – they will improve even if it doesn’t show up in their record.
- Tyson Summers (Georgia Southern) – One year in and the athletic department had to send out a press release saying Summers would be retained for this season. Confidence, gone. Needed to keep his job – 5 wins and at least look like a potential bowl team. Prediction – 5 wins and they will look like a bowl team for the most part.
- Jim Mora (UCLA) – Jim needs the Rosen One to play like he has a shot at winning the Heisman this season. And I think it will happen. Not saying he will win the Heisman but he will be much improved and so will the Bruins. Needed to keep his job – 7 wins. Prediction – 9 wins and making USC sweat for the Victory Bell.
- Chris Ash (Rutgers) – Coaching at Rutgers must be tough now that the team is firmly in the Big Ten basement. Let’s be honest: very few people want that job. Ash is a hero! Needed to keep his job – he’s safe since no one else wants it for now. Prediction – 3 wins and keeping Michigan under 60 points.
- Butch Jones (Tennessee) – The Champions of Life. Butch really needs to learn to just shut his mouth and coach sometimes. Needed to keep his job – 9 wins and being a contender in the SEC East. Prediction – 10 wins and STILL….CHAMPIONS OF LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIFE…THE TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS!!!!
Done. That took too long. I don’t want to say I hope all these coaches get fired but I do like being accurate.
Next up will be my Heisman ballot. No one should give me a Heisman ballot. I will demonstrate why in the next post. After that will have to be…yes, it’s the FIRST SCHEDULE POST OF THE SEASON!!!!!!!!!!!!! Woohoo! Finally made it. We are four days out. Problem is, I still don’t know where all the U.S. College Sports Package channels have gone to now that they have been replaced by regional CTV channels which, in essence, replaced the need for Sunday Ticket since DAZN now has it. I will say this often I believe but if DAZN somehow gets a good college football package then I might be changing my tune about it.