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Coaches Hotseat 2012

UK has gotten worse each year under Joker

Coaches HotSeat 2012
Entering the 2012 season nearly half of the coaches in College Football have coached 2 or fewer seasons at their school. This means there isn't as likely to be as many coaching changes as we saw in 2011 when there were 28 changes. 20 coaches were fired in 2011, a number I'd expect to be closer to the 10-15 range in 2012. Here is my list of 10 coaches who's backside is a little warm entering the 2012 season.
Note: Record at current school listed

1. Derek Dooley 11-14 Tennessee- Coaching turnover within the program and some key injuries in 2011 are probably more to blame for Tennessee's failures under Dooley than poor coaching. Dooley is an intelligent individual and a capable coach, but more is certainly expected in Tennessee. The Vols' Football program is one of the most historic in College Football and just went through their first back to back losing seasons since 1910 & 1911. Dooley will return Tyler Bray, who is capable of being one of the SEC's best QBs and there is some nice young talent on the 2012 team, but with some staff changes in Knoxville there could be an adjustment time for the Vols that Dooley doesn't have time for. If Dooley is not able to win 8 games in 2012 then it is certainly possible we could see a coaching change in Knoxville. Another losing season and he is likely out. If Barbara Dooley wants to call, email, or tweet me to defend her son then I'd love to hear from her.

2. Frank Spaziani 20-19 Boston College- Boston College had been one of College Football's most consistent programs. BC had 11 consecutive seasons of 8 wins or more prior to 2010. When Spaziani was hired he became the 3rd Boston College Coach in 2 years, but the program was still in very good condition as they had 31 wins in the 3 years prior to him. Last year BC had the most losses since 1995 and had only 3 FBS wins. Boston College isn't the type program that expects much more than winning seasons from its coaches, so 7 wins probably saves Spaziani in 2012.

3. Joker Phillips 11-14 Kentucky- Phillips got the Kentucky job because he was the "Coach in Waiting" on the Rich Brooks staff. Brooks did one of the best jobs in College Football by taking the Cats to 4 straight bowl games in his final 4 seasons. Since then it has been obvious that Kentucky Football just isn't as good as it was under Brooks and it appears UK is in danger of becoming the SEC's cellar dweller. Last year's Kentucky team averaged only 15 points per game, not a good thing when your coach has an offensive background. Phillips is 4-12 against SEC teams and only averaged 11 ppg in SEC play last year. With Missouri entering the East and Vanderbilt improving, things are only going to get more difficult for Phillips. Since Phillips is one of the lowest paid coaches in the SEC, the Cats could be in a very good position with its next hire to spend some good money if they could find the right coach.

4. Randy Edsall 2-10 Maryland- A second year coach shouldn't be on the hotseat, but the way Edsall has handled himself at Maryland has put him there. Things seemed to be going great for Edsall after a week 1 win over Miami. The Terps debuted new uniforms and looked to be a team that could contend for an ACC Championship. Unfortunately for Maryland things soured quickly. A 38-7 loss to Temple was bad enough, but a 1-10 record after the Miami game made things just awful. After the season ended Edsall had 6 players decide to leave the program within a week of the season ending. Then in early February Maryland QB and 2010 ACC Freshman of the Year Danny O'Brien decided to transfer as well. Edsall at first blocked O'Brien from transferring to Vanderbilt(where former OC James Franklin is at), but has since said he can transfer. A poor record on the field and poor relationships off the field could get Edsall out of College Park sooner than expected.

5. Rob Akey 19-43 Idaho- Recruiting to Moscow, Idaho is not an easy job at all. Akey has had only 1 winning season in 5 years as coach at Idaho. His 10 loss team last year was the 3rd team in his 5 seasons to finish with 10+ losses. Akey seems to be popular with his players, but would Idaho be willing to accept a 5th losing season in 6 years? To be honest, this program is better off in the Big Sky than it is in the FBS. The State of Idaho doesn't have the resources to have 2 College Football powers in it and Boise State is miles beyond Idaho at this point.

6. Dewayne Walker 9-29 New Mexico State- Walker took over at New Mexico State for Hal Mumme in 2009 and has yet to get past the 4 win mark for the Aggies. Walker came to Las Cruces after spending time as a defensive coordinator at UCLA, but the defenses at New Mexico State have gotten worse every year under his watch. In year 1 his team allowed 30 or more points a game for the 3 straight season. New Mexico State has only had 3 winning seasons in the last 20 years, so expecting a 4th might not be realistic in 2012, but the Aggies must show some improvement for Walker to remain a 5th year.

7. Tommy Tuberville 13-12 Texas Tech- Tommy Tuberville just doesn't seem to fit the Texas Tech job. Texas Tech built its reputation on Mike Leach's passing attack and Tommy Tuberville is someone who won at Auburn with his power running game and tough defense. Tuberville has tried to run a spread at Tech, Last year Tech had its lowing scoring total in 10 years and allowed a school record 39 points per game leading to a 5-7 finish. This has also been a bad year for the Tuberville family. Tuberville was accused of defrauding investors out of more than $1.7 million in Alabama following his tenure at Auburn this past February. Suzanne Tuberville was in a crash on Nov. 1 after running a red light and hitting a vehicle driven by Nelda Purdy, 73. Four months later, Purdy’s husband, Ira Purdy, died from complications resulting from his injuries sustained in the wreck, according to a Lubbock, Texas attorney representing the family. Tuberville is a good coach, but going away from his way of coaching in order to make fans happy with a spread passing attack could cost him in the end.

8.Mike Price 45-52 UTEP- When Price first took over the UTEP job it appeared he had the Miners ready to become a Non BCS power. His first 2 teams went 16-8, but since then he's had 6 straight losing seasons and has a 29-44 record. Price will be 66 when the 2012 season starts, so if he has a 7th straight losing season it may be time for him to step aside and announce his retirement from coaching.
9. Dave Clawson 14-23 Bowling Green- Clawson came to Bowling Green after taking Richmond to the 2008 FCS Semifinals. The 2009 Spiders won the National Championship under current Virginia Coach Mike London, but few would argue it was Clawson that built up that 09 squad. This is why I find it strange Clawson hasn't had more success at Bowling Green. His first team did go 7-6 and ended up in the Humanitarian Bowl, but back to back losing seasons have followed. Gary Blackney was the last Bowling Green coach with 3 straight losing seasons and he was fired in 1999. A 3rd straight for Clawson likely has him out the door as Bowling Green has typically been one of the better MAC programs.

10. Dan Enos 6-18 Central Michigan- Central Michigan had become the developing grounds for Cincinnati coaches the last decade. Both Brian Kelly and Butch Jones left Central Michigan to take the Bearcats job, but Enos isn't likley to be leaving CMU for a better job anytime soon. Enos took over a Chippewa program that had won 38 games from 06-09. The 09 team won a school record 12 games and finished ranked 23rd in the AP, the first top 25 finish in school history. Losing QB Dan LeFevour certainly hurt, but losing more games in 2 seasons that the program lost the previous 4 seasons will always get you on the hot seat.
Matt Barber

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