Les Miles, Dabo Swinney and College Football's Top Coach of the Year Candidates

Randy ChambersAnalyst IOctober 10, 2011

Les Miles, Dabo Swinney and College Football's Top Coach of the Year Candidates

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    The Coach of the Year award has to mean a lot to the coach that wins it because this is a tough business to last in. The majority of these college football programs expect a lot and if you don't produce in a timely manner, you're out looking for another job.

    Every coaching situation is different and you can make an argument for a lot of them.

    Here are the top five Coach of the Year candidates after five weeks of the college football season.

Boise State, Chris Petersen

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    Whether you like Peterson and the Broncos or not, a top coaches list just isn't right without him on it. 

    He does nothing but win football games and in his six years at Boise he is 65-5 with three bowl wins. No other coach in the country can claim they have a higher winning percentage than him in that time span.

    Sure, the majority of those wins come against cupcake opponents but he gets the job done and has his team in position to make a BCS bowl every season. He does this with a team with only a couple of players that could actually make an SEC roster.

    Whether you like him or not, he is a great coach and has to be on any list that includes great coaches.

Michigan, Brady Hoke

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    Having to put up with Rich Rodriguez for three years, Michigan fans have seen better days.

    In Brady Hoke's first season as the head coach for the Wolverines, they're off to a fast 5-0 start and their No. 12 ranking is the highest it's been since 2007.

    We will see just how far this Michigan team will go once they enter the heart of the Big Ten schedule but things are looking good right now.

    If Hoke can lead this team to the Big Ten title game he has to be a strong candidate.

Oklahoma State, Mike Gundy

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    He's a man and he's 40 and don't you forget it.

    He's also a head coach that has the Cowboys 15-2 in the last two seasons and has them ranked No. 6 in the country right now. Sure, they've only beaten one ranked so far this season but they've looked very good and have one of the most explosive offenses in the country.

    We will find out just how good this team is when they enter the Big 12 schedule and take on the top competition but as of right now, they look really good.

    If Oklahoma State wins the Big 12, you have to consider Gundy a top candidate for the award.

Clemson, Dabo Swinney

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    How about Dabo Swinney and the job he has done at Clemson?

    They've beaten three ranked teams in a row.

    This team went 6-7 last year and didn't reach a bowl game. They're already 5-0 and have become the favorites to win the ACC. The Tigers are currently ranked No. 8 in the AP Poll after being unranked before the season started.

    They are doing all of this with a sophomore quarterback who is in his first year as a starter and a freshman wide receiver who has caught six touchdown passes.

    The Tigers went from not talked-about to one of the most impressive teams in the country, and a lot of that is because of Dabo Swinney.

LSU, Les Miles

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    Is there any coach out there that has been more impressive than Miles?

    The Tigers have beaten three ranked teams already and all of them have been on the road. He has coached this team to a No. 1 spot in the polls and controls their own destiny as they try to reach the national championship.

    What's so impressive about this run is all of the offseason distractions that happened with this team. We've seen so many programs crumble under the pressure but Miles has his team focused on the task at hand and has them winning ballgames.

    Miles is a favorite to win this award.