Fox Sports: 4 SEC coaches unfairly put on hot seat
Throughout the offseason, we’ve seen a lot of “hot seat” lists. In many cases, an expert, analyst or commentator will make the case for why certain coaches must win in the upcoming season or risk losing their jobs.
Aaron Torres of Fox Sports has come up with a different list – coaches who are widely seen as on the hot seat, but, in his opinion, shouldn’t be. Here are the four SEC coaches he believes fits that bill, with a sampling of his reasons why:
- Gus Malzahn, Auburn: “This is a fanbase which I recently called the most delusional in the country, and one that’s fired three separate coaches in my lifetime who had undefeated seasons. They’re also the only school ever to fire a coach within two seasons of winning a national title (Gene Chizik).”
- Les Miles, LSU: “Miles has lost five straight to Nick Saban. A sixth straight – baring something huge – could be the end of his time in Baton Rouge. Even if it shouldn’t be.”
- Mark Stoops, Kentucky: “You can get better on gameday, but if you don’t have ‘it’ on the recruiting trail, it’s never going to come. Stoops has ‘it.’ And in time he will get better on Saturdays”
- Kevin Sumlin, Texas A&M: “This year’s team should give him fewer headaches than in years past. And it should, hopefully be enough for him to keep his job.”
Torres’ list begs the question if all three SEC West coaches can survive another year in which the three teams are all looking to move up in the standings while Alabama and Ole Miss are both expected to be competitive again in 2016.
If Auburn does fire Malzahn, Torres’ reaction column looks like it will be worth a read. In Thursday’s list, he unloaded on the the Auburn fanbase for wanting to axe Malzahn:
Hearing Auburn fans call for Malzahn’s head is like the time my mom tried to figure out the Kardashian phenomenon. It’s confusing and makes your head hurt, to the point that after a while it’s not worth thinking about. Still, Auburn fans want Malzahn gone, and we shouldn’t be surprised. This is a fanbase which I recently called the most delusional in the country, and one that’s fired three separate coaches in my lifetime who had undefeated seasons. They’re also the only school ever to fire a coach within two seasons of winning a national title (Gene Chizik). So of course they want Malzahn gone, even after he had Auburn in the title game three seasons ago, and started 7-1 the year before last. At this point, I’ve given up reasoning with Auburn fans, and instead would ask: If you want to fire Malzahn, who will you get that’s better?
For his full thoughts on why the other teams should stick with their coaches, the list can be read here.