The College Football News 2019 midseason ranking of all the head coaches.
How good were all the head coaches over the first half of the year?
With a nod to the coaching staffs as a whole – it’s not just about the head man, but he’s the one dealing with the pressure – here’s our midseason ranking of all the head coaches and the jobs they’ve done so far.
The criteria? It’s loose, but it’s based on whose teams are playing the best – and worst – with the talent levels they have to work with. Who has dealt with the most adversity, whose teams are playing the sharpest, and whose teams just haven’t shown up so far?
One quick note. These are NOT rankings of how good the head coaches are overall. This is about who has done the best job at the midseason – think of this as a referendum on all the teams and their first halves of the season.
College Football News Midseason Head Coach Rankings
Best Win and Worst Loss are defined by the competition, not necessarily the final scores.
THE BRUTAL START: The coaches who had a really, really, really rough first half of the season
130. Nunzio Campanile (0-2)/Chris Ash (1-3), Rutgers
Best Win: Rutgers 48, UMass 21
Worst Loss: Maryland 48, Rutgers 7
Midseason Thought: Ash was the first coach to be fired. Campanile was left with an empty cupboard in an unfair situation.
129. Chip Kelly, UCLA (1-5)
Best Win: UCLA 67, Washington State 63
Worst Loss: Oregon State 48, UCLA 31
Midseason Thought: This really, really, really, really, really, really isn’t working.
128. Dana Holgorsen, Houston (2-4)
Best Win: Houston 45, North Texas 25
Worst Loss: Tulane 38, Houston 31
Midseason Thought: This couldn’t have gone much worse. The Cougars lost in painful fashion to Tulane for a 1-3 start, the star QB took the rest of the year off, there are (unfounded) accusations on social media of tanking – which make NO sense, but it’s all part of the narrative – and now it seems like a lost year for a team that was supposed to have the talent to win the AAC.
127. Tom Arth, Akron (0-6)
Best Game: UAB 31, Akron 20
Worst Loss: UMass 37, Akron 29
Midseason Thought: It’s been a weeeeee bit of a struggle so far in his first year. When you’re losing to UMass and haven’t won a game, it’s been a rough ride.
126. Steve Campbell, South Alabama (1-5)
Best Win: South Alabama 37, Jackson State 14
Worst Loss: ULM 30, South Alabama 17
Midseason Thought: The USA offense isn’t doing anything in Campbell’s second year – the Jaguars should be better than 0-2 in Sun Belt play. There’s only been one close game against an FBS team.
125. Derek Mason, Vanderbilt (1-5)
Best Win: Vanderbilt 24, Northern Illinois 18
Worst Loss: UNLV 34, Vanderbilt 10
Midseason Thought: It’s not like the Commodores have Alabama’s talent, but … come on. This is still an SEC team, and it’s getting rolled. The first four losses were fine, but the blowout gack to UNLV was inexcusable.
124. Geoff Collins, Georgia Tech (1-5)
Best Win: Georgia Tech 14, USF 10
Worst Loss: Citadel 27, Georgia Tech 24
Midseason Thought: Grade on a curve because of the total shift in offensive styles, but the defense is just as big a problem. How does this program lose to a Citadel team that runs the option?
123. Tony Sanchez, UNLV (2-4)
Best Win: UNLV 34, Vanderbilt 10
Worst Loss: Arkansas State 43, UNLV 17
Midseason Thought: Just as it seemed like there was no chance for Sanchez to survive another miserable season, his team shows up and rocks Vanderbilt. It’s been a fight with blowout loss after blowout loss.
122. Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern (1-4)
Best Win: Northwestern 30, UNLV 14
Worst Loss: Nebraska 13, Northwestern 10
Midseason Thought: The Cats are supposed to be a whole lot better and stronger than this, and there’s no excuse for a putrid offense that can’t seem to complete a forward pass. The O is spoiling a decent year from the D.
121. Bobby Wilder, Old Dominion (1-5)
Best Win: Old Dominion 24, Norfolk State 21
Worst Loss: WKU 30, Old Dominion 3
Midseason Thought: The godfather of the program isn’t having any luck with no offense and no wins over any FBS teams. The schedule hasn’t been that bad.