Coaching Carousel Tracker: Who's Fired, Who's Hired, Top Candidates

Coaching Carousel Tracker: Who's Fired, Who's Hired, Top Candidates

Coach Hot Seat

Coaching Carousel Tracker: Who's Fired, Who's Hired, Top Candidates


It’s that time of year. Which coaches on the carousel are fired, hired, who are the top candidates and who’s on the hot seat?

Bowling Green Falcons

Who’s Fired: Mike Jinks
Who’s Hired
: Scot Loeffler, Boston College
Will This Work?: The Falcons are looking to keep the offense going while finally generating some semblance of a defense. They’re looking for Boston College, and that’s what it got in former BC offensive coordinator to give it a shot. Loeffler has a little bit of MAC experience – he was the Central Michigan quarterbacks coach in the early 2000s – growing into a high-riser on the assistant coaching circuit. The 44-year-old is more than ready, and this is the right job.

Central Michigan Chippewas

Who’s Fired: John Bonamego
Top Candidate
: Tony Annese, Ferris State head coach

Charlotte 49ers

Who’s Fired: Brad Lambert
Top Candidates
: Mike Houston, James Madison head coach
– Mike Minter, Campbell head coach
– Tony Elliott, Clemson co-offensive coordinator

Colorado Buffaloes

Who’s Fired: Mike MacIntyre
Who’s Hired
: Mel Tucker, Georgia defensive coordinator
Will This Work?
: The Buffs wanted to pivot to a more defensive-minded head man, and that’s Tucker. He has yet to be a head coach, but he’s got the NFL experience as a defensive coordinator with Chicago, Cleveland and Jacksonville – with various degrees of success – and he’s been Georgia’s DC over the last few seasons. It’s a do-over for Colorado, and he’s going to need time to build this up the way he wants. 

East Carolina Pirates

Who’s Fired: Scottie Montgomery 
Top Candidate
: Mike Houston, James Madison head coach
– Scott Satterfield, Appalachian State head coach

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Who’s Leaving: Paul Johnson
Top Candidates
: Ken Whisenhunt, San Diego Chargers offensive coordinator
– Mike Norvell, Memphis head coach

Kansas Jayhawks

Who’s Fired: David Beaty
Who’s Hired
: Les Miles
Will This Work?: Is it going to mean national championships in Lawrence? Nah. But Miles can recruit, he’s going to give Kansas an identity, and he’ll bring the program up into regular bowl status. It doesn’t take much to go from nothing to bowl bound in the Big 12, and he’ll do that.

Louisville Cardinals

Who’s Fired: Bobby Petrino
Top Candidates
: Scott Satterfield, Appalachian State head coach
– Barry Odom, Missouri head coach
– Neal Brown, Troy head coach
Top 5 Louisville Coaching Candidates

Maryland Terrapins

Who’s Fired: DJ Durkin
Top Candidates
: Matt Canada, interim head coach
– Tony Elliott, Clemson co-offensive coordinator

North Carolina Tar Heels

Who’s Fired: Larry Fedora
Who’s Hired
: Mack Brown, TV analyst
Will This Work?: Ehhhhhhhhh, it depends on what North Carolina is looking for. Brown is 67, but he’s also the age of Lincoln Riley and Sean McVay combined – he’s not the hot hire everyone is looking for. Is he going to be the guy who can turn North Carolina into a consistent ACC Championship power and College Football Playoff threat? He’ll get them back to being bowl-good, but this should be a bigger destination job for a high-rising option.

Texas State Bobcats

Who’s Fired: Everett Withers
Who’s Hired
: Jake Spavital, West Virginia offensive coordinator
Will This Work?: He fits the mold of the young offensive mind. The 33-year-old helped make West Virginia rock, he was the offensive coordinator for a stretch under Kevin Sumlin at Texas A&M and for a year at Cal under Sonny Dykes. He’ll need time, but he’ll get the offense going – he’s an under-the-radar nice get for the program.

Texas Tech Red Raiders

Who’s Fired: Kliff Kingsbury
Who’s Hired
: Matt Wells, Utah State head coach
Will This Work?: Uhhhh, okay. Considering Kingsbury is the hottest free agent coach going right now – at least as a top coordinator with an eye on another head coaching job against soon – is Wells that much of an upgrade? He came up with a 10-2 season with a high-powered offense that ripped apart absolutely no one who can play defense, and he’s 44-34 after six years with the Aggies. But at least his offense should keep up the pace in the Big 12.

UMass Minutemen

Who’s Fired: Mark Whipple
Top Candidates
: Joe Harasymiak, Maine head coach
– Brian Bohannon, Kennesaw State head coach

WKU Hilltoppers

Who’s Fired: Mike Sanford
Who’s Hired
: Tyson Helton
Will This Work?
: The young offensive coordinator at Tennessee and USC after helping the WKU O get going under Jeff Brohm is ready. He’s not Brohm, but he got the moribund Tennessee offense going a bit in the first year under Jeremy Pruitt. Clay Helton’s younger brother, he has next-big-thing upside after getting at least two years – unlike Sanford – to turn this around.


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