After Week 9, who’s feeling the heat and need a win now. Which five are on the hot seat?
Miles, Hazell, Turner, DeRuyter … coaches are already starting to get launched, and now who needs to keep winning to save their own gig? Interestingly enough, some of the most pressured coaches – Mark Helfrich, Charlie Strong, Steve Addazio and Brian Kelly – all won this weekend and now have teams in the mix for a possible bowl bid.
So remember, being on a hot seat can change bigly – LOVE the new term in our lives – depending on the week. Also, being on a hot seat doesn’t just mean a coach might be fired – he might need his team to do something positive.
After Week 9 Coaches Hot Seat Top 5 Ranking
1. Charlie Partridge, Florida Atlantic
Just 7-25 in three years and 1-7 this season, Partridge isn’t having much luck and his team isn’t getting any sort of a break. You are what your record is, but the Owls lost four straight games by six points or fewer before getting bombed by WKU 52-3. It’s all setting up for a must-win next week against Rice – arguably the one team this year worse than FAU. There are winnable games left against UTEP and Old Dominion before closing out at Middle Tennessee, but beating the other Owls in Houston is a must.
2. Dave Doeren, NC State
You don’t lose to Boston College. It’s like the program went into the tank after the missed field goal at the end of regulation that would’ve beaten Clemson. The Wolfpack lost to the Tigers in overtime, they got destroyed by Louisville, and then came an inexplicable home loss to BC. With Florida State, at Syracuse, Miami and at North Carolina to close, going bowling isn’t a lock for the 4-4 team. Just 7-21 in the ACC under his reign, Doeren might not be on a he’ll-be-fired hot seat, but he could use a big finish or it’ll be a testy offseason.
3. Mark Helfrich, Oregon
The win over Arizona State and the emergence of Justin Hebert as the program’s franchise quarterback should buy him a little bit of time. The defense is just never going to be any good this year, but the offense looked like it’s supposed to. It’s going to be a tough finishing kick, though, with three of the last four games on the road going to USC, Utah and Oregon State wrapped around a date with Stanford.
4. Matt Wells, Utah State
Losing to San Diego State doesn’t matter too much – the Aztecs are terrific – but the Aggies have lost four of their last five games and now have to go to Wyoming to start a run of three of the last four games on the road. After a good first 2.5 years, the program has been on a slide, going 5-10 in the last 15 games. And now, it’s going to take something special to go bowling.
5. Doc Holliday, Marshall
Will he get any sort of a break in his seventh season and after winning 33 games in his previous three seasons? Absolutely. It’s a bad, bad year for a program and a coach that’s been far too good to just launch him for an aberration of a campaign, but a hot finish would be nice considering the only win over an FBS team came in a fight against FAU. Ending strong might be tough for this D against Middle Tennessee and WKU.
A big win would be really, really, really nice
David Bailiff, Rice; Ron Caragher, San Jose State; Paul Haynes, Kent State; Brian Kelly, Notre Dame; Sean Kugler, UTEP; Lance Leipold, Buffalo; Jim Mora Jr., UCLA; Brian Polian, Nevada; Charlie Strong, Texas