Fine For 2018, But Better Win In 2019
49. Chris Creighton, Eastern Michigan
Eastern Michigan is bowl eligible for the second time in three years. That’s amazing, but a clunker of a 2019 would make it four losing seasons in six campaigns.
48. Matt Viator, ULM
Two straight 4-8 seasons, and then bowl eligibility – boom. However, going back to 4-8 would be a problem.
47. Mark Richt, Miami
Nah, he’s not going to get fired next year unless there’s a total disaster, but … he’s supposed to have the program in national title contention, not fighting for a bowl.
46. Barry Odom, Missouri
Mizzou is very, very quietly having a strong season, but there can’t be a regression next year.
45. Matt Luke, Ole Miss
He’s doing an amazing job under trying circumstances, but if he and the Rebels have a poor 2019, there will be a thought try starting over.
44, Nick Rolovich, Hawaii
It was really, really, really rocky, but he did it. Hawaii needed a huge fourth quarter against UNLV from possibly suffering a massive season collapse.
43. Chad Morris, Arkansas
It’ll only be Year Two of a rebuild, but it had better be a whole lot better than Week One.
42. Paul Johnson, Georgia Tech
There’s a fine line for Johnson at this point. When the offense is humming, all is well. But with two losing seasons in the last four, it all has to keep going next year.
41. Jay Hopson, Southern Miss
Two good seasons were followed up by a mediocre run. There can’t be a downward trend.
40. Doc Holliday, Marshall
Yeah, fine, so he’s probably a whole lot more secure than this, but there can’t be a regression back to the 3-9 2016 season.
39. Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech shouldn’t need contingency plans to maybe go bowling. This season was likely just a blip in a rebuilding campaign. It had better be.
38. Will Muschamp, South Carolina
Ask Gamecock fans if they might have wanted Muschamp to be a whole lot higher than this after the Florida game. He’s done a good job, but being being mediocre in the East isn’t going to work.
37. PJ Fleck, Minnesota
It’s been fine in the total rebuild, and there are glimpses of potential greatness, but there has to be a boost soon.
36. Tim Lester, Western Michigan
He hit the six-win mark in two straight seasons, but the team hasn’t been in the mix for the MAC title. There can’t be a clunker of a 2019.
35. Dave Clawson, Wake Forest
He’s been magnificent at getting to – and winning – two straight bowls, but he likely can’t afford a 3-9ish season.
34. Willie Fritz, Tulane
After three straight okay years, he could use a great one. The team hung around the C-USA West race, but it wasn’t a player.
33. Shawn Elliott, Georgia State
There was so much promise in the 7-5 season with a bowl victory in Year One, but going 2-9 – injuries were an issue – made it a tough second season. Another bad year would be an issue.
32. John Bonamego, Central Michigan
It was a rebuilding year after three straight bowl seasons, but 1-10? He’s a lifer as long as the program wants him,. but there can’t be a second straight season like this.
31. Terry Bowden, Akron
He’s been able to work miracles for the program – getting it to the MAC Championship last year – but after seven seasons and five losing ones, there needs to be a rebound year.
30. Tom Allen, Indiana
To be fair, this changes if he beats Purdue and goes bowling. But after losing to the Boilermakers last year, this would be two straight losing seasons. There can’t be three.
29. Kliff Kingsbury, Texas Tech
It all comes down to one game against Baylor. The Red Raiders clunked against Kansas State with a shot to get bowl eligible, but blew it. They’ll probably win this week to go bowling, but next year, there has to be a big run.
28. Mike Sanford, WKU
Good first year, horrible second year. Amazing offense in the first year, no offense in the second year. He’s a young star, but there can’t be another two-win season.
27. Chuck Martin, Miami University
The RedHawks will beat Ball State and they’ll go bowling, but there’s still a shot at finishing with a fifth straight losing season.
26. Troy Calhoun, Air Force
He’s been the head man for 12 years, but he’s also had two straight seasons without a bowl appearance. It takes something special to win at Air Force, and he’s been great, but he could use one of those rebound ten-win seasons he’s been able to pull out.
25. Derek Mason, Vanderbilt
The program has fought to get into a position to potentially go bowling, but the East is getting better, and he’ll likely finish with a fifth straight losing season.
24. Brent Brennan, San Jose State
It’s an impossible situation, but it’s still not working. He deserves a whole lot of time to try building it up, but he’s 3-21 in two years.
23. Gus Malzahn, Auburn
It’s not fair, but the guy who coached in a national championship and came a win away from getting into College Football Playoff last year. But it’s never okay at Auburn to go 7-5. The massive buyout is an issue, just like it is for …
22. Lovie Smith, Illinois
Nine wins in three seasons. He might be a brilliant NFL head coach, and the program is still undergoing a youth movement, but it had better all kick in fast.
21. Kalani Sitake, BYU
Six wins and bowl eligibility. Yippee. The offense has to quickly become more interesting.