Thursday, August 22, 2013
Coaches that could be in trouble this season
Mike London, Virginia- London came to Charlottesville with some impressive credentials after two years at Richmond. He had a 4-8 season his first year but orchestrated an 8-5 turnaround in his second season and won ACC coach of the year, which inflated fans and administrators' expectations. After taking a step back with another 4-8 season the heat is on London's Cavaliers squad to at least make a bowl game. If not London could find himself looking for another job.
Ron English, Eastern Michigan- It doesn't help when you inherit a hopeless situation. It also doesn't help when Sports Illustrated names you as one of the five worst coaches in college football. Two years ago it looked like the Eagles were poised to turn the corner after posting a 6-6 record. After last year's 2-10 record it looks like it was more of a fluke than legit. With Northern Illinois going to a BCS bowl last year, Eastern Michigan needs some dramatic improvement for English to keep his job. That's a steep hill to climb.
Lane Kiffin, USC- This is an obvious choice and everyone knows why. After being hailed as a national championship contender last season and thought of as the team to end the SEC's championship dominance the Trojans failed miserably, finishing at 7-6. Kiffin is more bluster than sideline genius, but he did get a vote of confidence from athletic director Pat Haden. Doesn't make Kiffin secure but the Trojans better be in the Rose Bowl conversation in November and December.
Kirk Ferentz, Iowa- Even though Ferentz has been at Iowa for 14 years, this is a what have you done for me lately business. Ferentz has twice dragged the Hawkeyes out of mediocrity and into national prominence. He's also been named Big Ten coach of the year three times. If the Hawkeyes lose to another MAC team or two, and if they finish below .500 in conference play in what appears to be a less-than-stellar Big Ten, it might finally make fiscal sense to get Ferentz out of town. The Hawkeyes were 4-8 last season and finished with six straight losses to end the season.
June Jones, SMU- This might be a little unfair since the Mustangs still haven't fully recovered from the 'death penalty' levied by the NCAA. After his success at Hawaii I'm pretty sure the administrators at SMU were looking forward to seven win seasons and mediocrity. They want to be a BCS buster/playoff contender. I think Jones is secure at SMU but you never know.
Gary Pinkel, Missouri- This also might be unfair since Pinkel will now be judged on what he does in the SEC than for his full body of work. He made the Tigers nationally relevant and achieved a No.1 ranking at one point in 2007 when they finished at No.4. The Tigers suffered some injuries to their main playmakers last season derailed their potent offense but were just a few plays from being bowl eligible. If things don't turn around soon, he might be out as head coach of Missouri. However, no one should ever doubt the amazing job he has done at Missouri.