With the 2018-19 college football season done and Coaches Hot Seat now entering its 13 th season of covering the great game of college football it’s time to look backward at how the Hot Seat coaches got on the Hot Seat and what is facing those Hot Seat coaches as we head towards the 2019-20 season.
We will have something to say soon about the new head coaching hires in college football which is the most fascinating and risky group of coaching hires any of us can recall from watching college football closely since the mid-1970s which if that turns out to be TRUE it means there will be a lot more turnover in coaching jobs coming in the near future….a Helluva Lot more….so buckle yourself in!
Let’s bring out the Late Great Johnny Cash now to give these Hot Seat coaches Hell!
Thank You Mr. Cash!
1. Clay Helton, USC – There’s a school of thought among our USC-alum friends that Clay Helton skated along in his first three seasons at USC putting up records of….
2015: 5 – 4 (replacing Sark midseason)
2016: 10 – 3
2017: 5 – 7
…with what was plenty of talent and a decent coaching staff but that things began to unravel the moment things got a little tough and in 2018 the USC Trojans posted a records of…
Overall: 5 – 7
Pac 12: 4 – 5
…and certainly Helton is coaching for his job in 2019 and Helton knows it!
The thing is Clay Helton’s fate will determined early in 2019 because USC is facing one of the toughest schedules in college football this coming season that looks like this:
At Notre Dame
At Arizona State
Geez….looking at the above schedule a few weeks back we asked an USC-alum buddy of ours who was part of a group of people that tried to get Helton fired after last season what Helton will have to do in 2019 to keep his job and he says to us:
“Anything less than 10 wins Clay Helton is done and I know no one that thinks Lynn Swann has a clue how to do a coaching search or hire the very best coach that USC football can get if Helton is fired.”
Therein lies the real disaster at USC….if Clay Helton doesn’t hit that 10 win mark in 2019 then there’s a decent chance the Trojans will end up with another coach that wasn’t the…
Very Best Coach USC Could Hire
…as was the case in Every Single Coach hired after Pete Carroll left to take the Seahawks job after the 2009 season…
It’s 10 Wins or bust for Clay Helton in 2019 and maybe Bust for the next hire at USC as well!
2. Chris Ash, Rutgers – We are not quite sure why Chris Ash is still the head coach at Rutgers after three years on the job with a worse Rutgers football team today than one he took over before the 2016 season and posting these records in those three seasons…
Overall: 7 – 29
Big Ten: 3 – 24
…but come now these aren’t exactly the Sharpest Sticks in the Bin running the Rutgers Athletic Department and let’s play a little game here on how many games that YOU think Rutgers will win in 2019 under Chris Ash!
At Penn State
With Hugh Freeze at Liberty do you think Rutgers is going to beat Liberty in 2019?
Didn’t think so and we will go with a record of…
1 – 11
…for Rutgers in 2019 with a lone win over UMass!
You gotta fire a head coach that goes back-to-back 1 – 11 seasons in his third and fourth years on the job….right?
Not necessarily…..this is Rutgers we are talking about here!
3. Randy Edsall, UConn – We are not quite sure what UConn Athletics is hoping to achieve by allowing Randy Edsall to continue to coach the UConn football team…
The Total Destruction of UConn Athletics maybe?
Whatever the reason in his last two seasons on the job at UConn after he ran off to Maryland and then came running back Edsall has posted records of…
Overall: 4 – 20
AAC: 2 – 14
….and does anyone really think the trend of UConn Football in 2019 of Down, Down, Down The Huskies Boat Goes is going to change this coming season?
Didn’t think so and let’s look at UConn’s 2019 schedule….just for laughs…as Edsall enters his third season back coaching the Huskies:
We are guessing UConn beats Wagner….we would hope so…..but will UConn win another game in 2019 to beat the 1 – 11 record this past season?
Maybe….but that looks like 2 – 10 or 3 – 9 to us for UConn in 2019 and unless the folks at UConn are totally nuts we expect the UConn job to come open sometime around December 1, 2019.
4. Lovie Smith, Illinois – The reality is Lovie Smith took over a .500 football program at Illinois three seasons ago and he posted records of…
Overall: 9 – 27
Big Ten: 4 – 23
…and those records at a place like Illinois doesn’t get you fired…wait for it….it gets you a contract extension!
Illinois has played 22 FBS teams under Lovie Smith with .500+ records and the Illini’s records in those games is…
1 – 21!
Oh…and only 1 of Lovie Smith’s 9 wins at Illinois is against a FBS team with a .500 or better record and even more AMAZING the Illini have lost…
6 games to teams with sub-.500 records!
Let’s look at the Illini’s 2019 schedule to see where this rolling disaster is going….
At Michigan State
Illinois couldn’t have an easier out-of-conference slate so no way they should lose any of those games…if they do lose to any of Akron, UConn, or Eastern Michigan this rolling disaster will be off the bridge and into the river but how many of the 9 Big Ten games can the Illini win?
Maybe the Rutgers game on November 2?
4 – 8 best and 2 – 10 at worst is what we see for the Illini in 2019 with either surely getting Lovie another contract extension!
It’s Illinois and thus We Love, Love, Love Below Damn Average!
5. Willie Taggart, Florida State – We are all about to find out if Willie Taggart can coach the game of football or not because Willie has got himself in a Helluva Mess that is partly due to the mess that Jimbo Fisher left behind in Tallahassee AND how Willie has made that mess worse by making some poor assistant coaching hires and practice approaches that left the Seminoles leaderless and adrift in 2018…something that will be corrected in 2019 or Willie Taggart’s coaching career will be over before Christmas!
One thing pointed out to us by someone that has worked long in college athletics is that in Willie Taggart’s head coaching seasons at Western Kentucky, South Florida, Oregon and now Florida State where you will see today from Wikipedia has included only…
Two seasons when Taggart’s teams won 8+ games out of 9 seasons
….and certainly Taggart knows anything less than 9 wins at Florida State will land your ass right on the Hot Seat!
It’s our opinion that Taggart is going to need 8 wins at least in 2019 to be back to coach Florida State in 2020 and with that in mind let’s go to the FSU 2019 schedule:
Boise State – Jacksonville
At Wake Forest
At Boston College
What are those 8 wins exactly….
Boise State – Maybe
La. Monroe – Sure the Hell hope so!
At Virginia – Not Likely
Louisville – Probably
NC State – Maybe
At Clemson – Nope
At Wake Forest – Maybe
Syracuse – Maybe
Miami – Maybe
At Boston College – Maybe
Alabama State – Yes
At Florida – Nope
That adds up to….
1 Not Likely
1 Sure the Hell hope so
We see no reason with all the talent at Florida State right now that the Seminoles don’t win at least 8 games in 2019 and if not…the word we are getting is that Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell will be the #1 choice to replace Taggart if he is replaced.
6. Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech – The Steamrolling Disaster that is now Virginia Tech Football Program under Justin Fuente kept on a rolling in January with several key players transferring out and then the Hokies finishing with the…wait for it…
….in 2019…at Virginia Tech…really?
A few of us spent a few hours in Blacksburg, Virginia last Summer on our See America RV Trip driving from Gatlinburg, Tennessee to Appomattox, Virginia for a visit to the Appomattox Courthouse where Lee surrendered to Grant and then on to Charlottesville to see Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and those few hours in Blacksburg with a good friend of ours and Virginia Tech alum were interesting indeed and felt a lot like…
A lunch we had with an Ole Miss alum a couple of years ago in the offseason in Oxford before Hugh Freeze resigned at Mississippi
…and the reason we say that is because in Oxford, Mississippi our friend told us in Spring 2017…
“You need to put Freeze in the #1 Hot Seat because he is done at Ole Miss.”
….and our buddy in Blacksburg told us flat-out after talking about all the problems going on inside the Virginia Tech football program:
“Fuente is not going to make it here. He just doesn’t have it in him to deal with the problems that are now overtaking the entire program.”
Boy was he right as 2018 was nothing short of a Complete Disaster for the Hokies who finished at 6 – 7 and who could have easily lost two more games and not even gone to a bowl game!
Let’s look at the Hokies 2018 schedule to see where this is going:
At Boston College
At Notre Dame
At Georgia Tech
Even though Old Dominion beat the Hokies in 2018 the out-of-conference slate for Va. Tech in 2019 is a Damn joke so that’s three wins but can Fuente and the Hokies get to at least 6 wins in 2019 because anything less than 6 wins and Fuente is done in Blacksburg and if you cannot win at least 6 games at Blacksburg who in the Hell else is going to hire your ass to be a head coach?
Almost no one!
Our guess Virginia Tech goes 7 – 5 in 2019 and maybe 6 – 6 or maybe 8 – 4 and any of those records are not acceptable to us so they will not be acceptable to fans of Virginia Tech football….right?
We shall see!
7. Chad Morris, Arkansas – One of the most interesting numbers about Arkansas head coach Chad Morris who has been on the job one season in Fayetteville is Chad’s overall head coaching record at SMU and Arkansas of…
16 – 32
….and after a 2 – 10 record in that first season coaching the Razorbacks we don’t see Morris getting above the .500 mark in that record anytime soon!
The really tough thing about the Arkansas job now is that the SEC West is not exactly a place where you can get ahead of yourself if you are at the bottom and after a series of Nonsensical and Totally Foolish Moves by former Arkansas AD Jeff Long to hire….
John L. Smith
….to coach the Hogs when Long was fired the Arkansas football program was nothing short of a….
Complete Freaking Disaster
…when Morris showed up a year ago.!
Let’s go to the 2019 Arkansas schedule to see if there is any chance at all of this things going in the right direction in Year 2 for Chad Morris:
At Ole Miss
San Jose State
Well…with a typical SEC Conference Cupcakes From Heaven out-of-conference schedule Bozo the Clown could win…
4 Games in 2019
…coaching the Razorbacks so how many games will Chad Morris win?
Anything less than 5 wins and Chad Morris should be fired because that would mean you could only beat Bozo the Clown by one win and if that’s the case…
There’s really no reason to keep your ass on at any SEC school!
8. Gus Malzahn, Auburn – As someone at Coaches Hot Seat put it at dinner in January of this year…
“Gus Malzahn is making Saban-like money at Auburn and producing Terry Bowden like results!”
…which could not be Truer when the folks on The Plains are a paying a guy $7M a year…all guaranteed for 6 more years = $42 Million Dollars who is performing at a level that….
Any Random High School Football Coach in America could do at Auburn!
Consider this for a moment…
Gus Malzahn has now been the head coach at Auburn for 6 seasons and he has lost…
5 or more games in 4 of those 6 seasons
4 or more games in in 5 of those 6 seasons
Oh….Gus Malzahn’s record in SEC Conference play at Auburn now stands at…
28 – 20
…and Nick Saban over the past 6 seasons has posted an SEC Conference record of…
44 – 4
Meanwhile at LSU the combined SEC records of Les Miles + Ed Orgeron since 2013 stand at…
30 – 18
….and at Georgia under Kirby Smart + Mark Richt the Bulldogs in SEC play since 2013 stand at…
34 – 14
The reality is…
“Gus Malzahn is making Saban-like money at Auburn and producing Terry Bowden like results!”
Oh…but if we go to the record books on Gus Malzahn and Terry Bowden’s 6 seasons Auburn we find something very Damn troubling >
Terry Bowden 6 seasons at Auburn:
30 – 14 – 1 = .677 winning percentage!
Gus Malzahn 6 seasons at Auburn:
28 – 20 = .583 winning percentage!
“Gus Malzahn is making Saban-like money at Auburn and NOT EVEN producing Terry Bowden like results!”
Let’s go to Auburn’s 2019 schedule to see if the Big Money folks on The Plains will be writing a BIG check come December to buy Gus Malzahn out keeping in mind anything less than 9 wins and you can kiss Gus Malzhan’s ass goodbye on The Plains!
At Texas A&M
Yep…this is the Cupcake Country SEC with THREE guaranteed Cupcake Wins on the schedule for the Candy Asses in Auburn that like most everyone else in the SEC schedule like Damn Cowards running to the coast from Sherman’s Army marching thru Atlanta and with that Cupcake Country Schedule…
Bozo the Clown could win 7 games coaching Auburn in 2019
…so Gus Malzahn with THREE guaranteed wins better Damn win 10 games in 2019 or it’s…
Turn Out The Lights and Write the Big Check on The Plains!
9. Kalani Sitake, BYU – In three seasons at BYU head coach Kalani Sitake is sitting on an overall record of…
20 – 19
….and BYU is going to really need a BIG season by the Cougars in 2019 or we gotta think they are going to be looking for a new head football coach and just when you say that take a look at one of the toughest schedules in FBS this coming season:
At Utah State
At San Diego State
We only see ONE sure win on the above schedule and at least 6 losses or so in our minds 2019 is gonna to be a struggle to just get to 6 wins for BYU and the folks in Provo are not going to tolerate 6 wins a season if this is still BYU football that is!
On the subject of BYU football if the folks in Provo were smart they would go ahead and rejoin the Mountain West Conference so they don’t have to go out and create schedules like the one above which is just Totally Absurd!
We are talking to YOU Tom Holmoe!
10. Mike Gundy, Oklahoma State – The most important record to keep your eye on for Mike Gundy is Oklahoma State’s record in Big 12 Conference play the last two seasons which sits at…
9 – 9
….now and either Gundy will get this listing ship together or Mediocrity will set in and Stillwater while Gundy is out lassoing rattlesnakes and getting paid a Helluva Lot of $$$ to do…not very much really!
Let’s take a look at Oklahoma State’s 2019 schedule….
At Oregon State
At Texas Tech
At Iowa State
At West Virginia
With what looks like 3 easy wins to open the season…if Gundy loses to Oregon State, McNeese or Tulsa he should be fired on the spot right after that loss….the Big 12 slate has the potential to give the Cowboys some trouble with some tough road and home games and if we had to guess OSU will finish at…
7 – 5
…in 2019 and Mike Gundy might just get his ass fired because 7 wins when you are getting paid a Helluva Lot of $$$ just doesn’t compute…that is if the folks in Stillwater interested in winning Championships! Now if they like Average As Hell then if it is 7 – 5 just keep Gundy around and you can celebrate that Average As Hell right through Christmas and New Year’s!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year in Stillwater = Where Average As Hell Is Celebrated!