It takes the right situation for a new college football coach to make an immediate impact.
With big names such as Bobby Petrino, Bret Bielema, Skip Holtz, Gus Malzahn, Dave Doeren and Tommy Tuberville all finding new universities to call home in 2013, a good question to ask is which coach will be successful in his debut season?
Heck, it's what everyone wants to know.
But better yet, which coach has the tools necessary to succeed in his first season? Well, that involves many factors, including which conference a team is in and the players returning to that team.
Because Bielema's and Malzahn's new coaching positions take place in college football's toughest conference, the SEC, it will take them longer to find success. LSU and Alabama are the monsters in the SEC West and with Johnny Manziel returning, Texas A&M should be scary good in 2013.
So that knocks both of them off the list. But what about other coaches in smaller conferences? Well, Skip Holtz is headed to Louisiana Tech, where the Bulldogs just had a nine-win season. So Holtz should come in and experience success right away, correct?
Eh, not so fast my friend. The Bulldogs are losing their quarterback Colby Cameron, who passed for 4,147 yards, 31 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Losing him is a pretty big deal, and that should have an effect on Holtz' success in his first year.
So with that said, these are the coaches that should have the most success in their first years.
Bobby Petrino knows exactly what he's doing.
By going to Western Kentucky, Petrino is going to stay for a few years, bring the Hilltoppers a few winning seasons and then find his way back into the SEC. Western Kentucky would be foolish to think otherwise.
But hey, that's not a bad thing. There's nothing wrong with having Petrino come in for one or two years and make your program a heck of a lot better. And that's just what Petrino will do.
Western Kentucky is in the Sun Belt, where Petrino's knowledge alone will help his team compete. Expect Petrino to mold young freshman quarterback James Mauro into a more than capable starting quarterback.
Petrino could very well lead Western Kentucky to eight or nine wins in 2013.
Let's face it—the ACC isn't what it used to be.
That should open the door for Dave Doeren to come in and win football games. Doeren is inheriting a team that went 7-5 this season, and though NC State will lose Mike Glennon, the Wolfpack still have some firepower returning.
Of those players returning is freshman running back Shadrach Thornton, who led NC State in rushing this season. Sophomore Tony Creecy will join him in the backfield as well in 2013, so Doeren will have a good pair of backs to work with.
Doeren jumped at the opportunity of coaching at NC State, and though it's a bigger job than Northern Illinois, you have to consider he might have believed he could win immediately with the Wolfpack.
The whole Tuberville leaving to go to Cincinnati scenario was just downright weird.
Why leave Texas Tech to go to Cincinnati? And did he really leave recruits to accept the job? This was just all so unexpected and leaves one with an eerie feeling.
But take a deeper look. The Bearcats won nine games in the Big East, and with Tuberville taking the reigns in 2013, Cincinnati should be a favorite to win whichever conference the school ends up in.
How fitting that once Tuberville decided to come, seven schools made the decision to leave the Big East.
Regardless, Tuberville, like Doeren and Petrino, should have immediate success at his new destination in 2013.