University of Texas Head Football Coach Mack Brown received the one thing most coaches never want to get and that’s the dreaded “vote of confidence” from school presidents. We see it all the time in both college and professional sports where a general manager or in this case, the school president gives his full support to the embattled coach.
Brown has a seat that is getting warmer by the second. Regardless of what his Longhorns do against a very good Ole Miss team today, the outcome of the game in College Station may have just as much to do with whether he survives or not. There are few things a Texas’ Alum hates more than seeing the rival Aggies gain more popularity in the state of Texas and in the nation.
Should Texas A&M knock off #1 Alabama and Brown’s Longhorns lose to the Rebels, I guarantee the calls to Texas President Bill Powers will be fast and furious.
Brown tried to right the ship in Austin a bit this week when he fired defensive coordinator Manny Diaz. Texas was embarrassed by BYU who ran over, around and through the Longhorns at will. The strange thing is that Brown has replaced Diaz with long-time NFL and college coach Greg Robinson who struggled at Michigan under Rich Rodriguez.
Perhaps Robinson, who has been a ‘defensive analyst’ for the ‘Horns, will turn things around but they will need to do a lot more than just coach better. They must play better and recruit better as well. With A&M in the Southeastern Conference now, the state of Texas has been opened wide to other SEC schools who are poaching players that normally would have gone to Austin.
Brown may indeed survive the season but in a weak Big 12, anything shy of a BCS berth might spell the end for him.
Then there’s the situation out in Los Angeles where Lane Kiffin saw the flame under his bum go for temperate to scolding in a matter of one week. Following a ho-hum win over dreadful Hawaii, the Trojans lost their home opener 10-7 to Mike Leach and Washington State. To be fair, the Cougars are an improved team but they shouldn’t be able to waltz into the Coliseum and knock off USC.
Then consider the type of game it was. Normally with Leach on one sideline, you’d expect a ton of points but that wasn’t the case. Wazzu held the Trojans to just 54 yards passing for the entire game and only had 215 of their own. This is USC we are talking about here. A school that cranks out NFL-caliber quarterbacks like Ford cranks out cars.
Kiffin entered the season with his own ‘vote of confidence’ from Athletic Director Pat Haden. That can’t sit well with the Trojan faithful right now.
It was reported late Sunday that the Trojans held a ‘players-only’ meeting which Kiffin denied taking place. According to the players, a meeting did indeed happen but it was just to talk about staying positive and getting back on track. Early media reports suggested that it may have been to blow off steam over Kiffin.
Whatever the main topics of the meeting were really doesn’t matter because Kiffin has proven to be the one coach in America who continues to do less with more wherever he goes. I don’t see it ending well for Kiffin and it could come before this season is over.
Also on the hot seat…. Kirk Ferentz in Iowa. 4-8 last year and lost to Northern Illinois at home to open this season… Randy Edsall in Maryland. Has not delivered in College Park and with Terps headed to Big Ten next year, he needs to get it going… Ron English at Eastern Michigan. Has career record of 11-39 over five plus years.