College Football Coaching Carousel: Winners, Losers, & Still Looking For Help
Oh what a tangled web we weave.
Coaching changes are all around football right now. Plenty of NFL coaching jobs are open and college coaches are being mentioned as possible replacements.
With all the changes, who are the winners, who are the losers and who is still looking for some help?
Read on to find out and let us know what you think.
Winners: 6. Tony Sparano
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2010 Job: Miami Dolphins
Rumor: According to ESPN, Tony Sparano has been mentioned as a possible coaching candidate to replace Randy Edsall at UConn.
Why He is a Winner: After a 7-9 season at Miami, a move to a college team that played in a BCS game would be a great move for a guy that would probably have to take a coordinator job to stay in the NFL.
I am not sure if the move would be the best for Sporano, just because I think he is a decent NFL coach, but I think he is inventive enough that he would run some great schemes.
Losers: 6. Ralph Friedgen
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2010 Job: Maryland Terrapins
News: Ralph Friedgen was bought out of the final year of his contract after a 9-4 season.
Why He is a Loser: Anytime you are named ACC Coach of the Year and lose your job, it's a bad thing. Friedgen is part of that group.
Friedgen will likely be a hot offensive coordinator name this offseason and I think he will find a job somewhere, but just not at Maryland. I almost think there is something more behind this story, but until we hear more, that's all we know.
Still Looking: 6. Tom Cable
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2010 Job: Oakland Raiders
Rumor: Tom Cable is out as head coach of the Raiders after leading them to an 8-8 record and a perfect 6-0 record in the AFC West.
What He Is Looking For: Prior to being named the head coach of the Raiders, Cable had been the head coach at Idaho and the offensive coordinator at UCLA before jumping to the pros. Now that he is looking for a new job, speculation has been that he could find work in college next season.
While there isn't any landing spots that have started to emerge for Cable, UCLA could be a place that would welcome back Cable. The Bruins haven't had an offense as good as the one led by Cable since he left in 2005.
Winners: 5. Florida
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2010 Coach: Urban Meyer
Rumor: New head coach Will Muschamp has announced that former Notre Dame head coach and current Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Charlie Weis will be the new offensive coordinator at Florida.
Why They Are Winners: While many people might think that Weis is not an impressive guy after he struggled at Notre Dame, his problem was never the offense. At Florida, Weis doesn't have to touch the defense.
If I am a stud offensive recruit, I am immediately looking at Florida as the place I can make the most impact. Weis will immediately turn that team into one of the best offenses in the entire NCAA.
Losers: 5. Stanford
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2010 Coach: Jim Harbaugh
Rumor: Harbaugh and Andrew Luck are both gone from Stanford.
Why They are Losers: After the greatest year in school history, a 12-1 season and a top five finish in the BCS, most teams would be looking to build a dynasty. However, Stanford will likely be looking for a new head coach and a new starting quarterback.
It is going to be shocking just how far Stanford will drop over the next few years if Harbaugh leaves. Whoever the next coach is will have a heck of a time trying to keep the recruits they have committed there right now.
Still Looking: 5. Arizona
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2010 Coach: Mike Stoops
Rumor: Stoops is not on the outs or anything like that, but the Wildcats are losing assistant coaches left and right.
What They Are Looking For: Arizona needs to replace their co-offensive coordinator, defensive line coach and defensive back coach. Their staff has been raided by other teams and if they hope to be in contention in the Pac-12, they will need to make some serious moves.
While some names have been thrown out as possible targets for the Wildcats, they will probably be patient and see what other coaches are available for them to target.
Winner: 4. Al Golden
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2010 Job: Temple
Rumor: Al Golden has been named the head coach at the University of Miami.
Why He is a Winner: Golden has had a wild 14 months. Last December, he lost the Eagle Bank Bowl to UCLA after leading at the half. This season, he finished with an 8-4 record only to find that his Temple Owls were going to be shut out of a bowl game. This December, Golden was hired at Miami to take one of the great jobs in college football.
While many people were surprised by the hire, I thought Miami did a great job hiring Golden. He is a great coach who runs a clean smash-mouth program. He will be awesome in Miami.
Loser: 4. Texas
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2010 Coach: Mack Brown
Rumor: After losing their head coach in waiting to Florida, the Longhorns fired their offensive coordinator and have lost quite a few quality assistants to other schools.
Why They Are Losers: After an extremely disappointing season, the Longhorns needed to make changes, but losing Will Muschamp was not one of the changes they were hoping for. They also lost highly-regarded receivers coach Bobby Kennedy to Colorado.
While the Longhorns still have a ton of talent on the roster, they will certainly be a team to watch next year. If they struggle again, could Mack Brown be on the hot seat?
Still Looking: 4. UCLA
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2010 Coach: Rick Neuheisel
Rumor: After firing defensive coordinator Chuch Bullough, the Bruins are contemplating letting go of legendary offensive coordinator Norm Chow after struggling on offense during his three years in Westwood.
What They Are Looking For: The names surrounding the UCLA coordinator search are ambitious. Vic Fangio, the Stanford defensive coordinator, is at the top of UCLA's list, but another possibility that has been mentioned is former Miami head coach Randy Shannon.
Former UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker has reportedly expressed interest in a return to the UCLA staff as well.
As far as the offensive coordinator goes, one report says that Chow has cleaned out his office, while that report is being denied by UCLA officials. Either way, this is something to pay attention to.
If UCLA makes a good hire for their coordinators, the Bruins could make a leap next year.
Winners: 3. Eric Mangini
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2010 Job: Cleveland Browns
Rumor: According to Chris Mortensen, Eric Mangini is a candidate to take over for Randy Edsall at UConn.
Why He is a Winner: Eric Mangini has now been fired by both the NY Jets and the Cleveland Browns and he would appear to be headed back to coordinator land. However, he has suddenly emerged as a legitimate candidate to return to his home state of Connecticut to take over for a team that played in a BCS game this year.
It seems silly that a team would want to hire a guy that has struggled to win at his last two stops, but Mangini would be a great defensive coordinator in college and he would draw quite a few skilled defensive players to UConn.
Losers: 3. Rich Rodriguez
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2010 Job: Michigan
Rumor: Reportedly, the athletic director at Michigan will be deciding the fate of Rich Rodriguez over the next day or so. Conventional wisdom is that Rodriguez will be fired.
Why He Is a Loser: Rich Rodriguez took over one of the most storied franchises in college football history and turned it into one of the doormats of the Big Ten. Every year, the media says that this is the year for Rich Rod, and every year, they fall flat on their face.
I am sure he will get another job and move to a lesser school and start winning again, but his failure at Michigan will always be a black mark on his resume.
Still Looking: 3. Michigan
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2010 Coach: Rich Rodriguez
Rumor: With the probable firing of Rodriguez, Michigan will be looking for a new head coach to rebuild the Wolverines to football prominence.
What They Are Looking For: It seems likely that Michigan will throw everything it can at Jim Harbaugh to try and convince him to come to his alma mater to coach. But with NFL teams also jumping at the prospect of Harbaugh, Michigan might have to look elsewhere.
Another name that has been discussed is San Diego State coach Brady Hoke, who is also a former Michigan player. Hoke just led SDSU to it's first bowl win since 1969. He would be another great target for the Wolverines.
Winners: 2. Randy Edsall
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2010 Job: UConn
Rumor: After leading UConn to its first-ever BCS bowl game, head coach Randy Edsall was hired by Maryland to be the head coach of the Terrapins.
Why He Is a Winner: Edsall was already a hot coaching prospect after building UConn from a Division I-AA team to a Big East contender, but to get a better job just one day after his BCS bowl game was really something.
He is one of the best coaches in America and now that he is moving up in the world, I expect Maryland to be one of the better teams in the ACC very soon.
Losers: 2. Mike Leach
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2010 Job: None
Rumor: Once rumored to be the next Maryland coach, Mike Leach was then rumored to be the front runner at UConn before Eric Mangini's name emerged as a better candidate.
Why He Is a Loser: After getting fired by Texas Tech, Leach has struggled to find his next stop in coaching. However, he has been out of coaching for a year and now he is not being looked at as a serious contender for open jobs.
Leach would be a hot hire if he was willing to take an offensive coordinator position. However, he is so stubborn that, for the near future, it looks like he will be out of coaching.
Still Looking: 2. Pittsburgh
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2010 Coach: Dave Wannstedt
Rumor: After firing head coach Wannstedt, the Panthers hired Miami (OH) Mike Haywood. However, after Haywood was arrested on a domestic violence charge, Pitt is looking for another new coach.
What They are Looking For: Pittsburgh is in need of a head coach that will actually coach a game for them. There are a few candidates that could be nice fits for the Panthers, including former West Virginia coach and current Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez, but they will probably take a little bit more time to find the coach here.
Mike Leach is another possible candidate.
Winners: 1. Jim Harbaugh
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2010 Job: Stanford
Rumor: After leading Stanford to its highest-ever final ranking, Jim Harbaugh will have no lack of suitors for places to coach in 2011.
Why He Is a Winner: Harbaugh could be the savior of Michigan, where he played his college ball, or he could jump to the NFL, to a place like San Francisco, Denver or Carolina.
Conventional wisdom and just about every media outlet has Harbaugh leaving Stanford,. But the question is where will he end up? Ultimately, I think Harbaugh will take a shot at the NFL and if he does, I think San Francisco would be the ideal place for him.
Losers: 1. Mike Haywood
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2010 Job: Miami (OH)
Rumor: After being hired as the head coach of Pitt, Mike Haywood was fired after being arrested for domestic violence.
Why He Is a Loser: Haywood is one of the few coaches in college football history to be fired before even coaching a game. He could have done great things at Pitt, he could have been a home run hire, but we will never know now because of his arrest.
To be fired before ever coaching a game makes Haywood the biggest loser this year in the coaching carousel.
Still Looking: 1. UConn
2010 Coach: Randy Edsall
Rumor: After playing in the school's first-ever BCS bowl, head coach Randy Edsall decided to make a jump from the Big East champs to Maryland.
What They Are Looking For: UConn has only had one football coach during their time in the FBS and that man was Edsall. During his 11 years at UConn, Edsall won more games than any other coach in the history of the school.
There are plenty of candidates for the job, including former Jets and Browns head coach Eric Mangini, current Dolphins head coach Tony Sparano and former Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach, but whoever fills the position will have some fairly large shoes to fill.