Who are the 10 coaches on the hot seat after week seven of the college football season?
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Training launches have slowed, which is clearly a good thing on a human level, as well as for the struggling teams who have about six more weeks to go before the season is almost over.
This does not mean that there are not many coaches who need to win immediately.
Rankings for the top 10 college football coaches are done in two ways. First five coaches who won’t be fired this year unless something crazy happens, but they could use a change of momentum hopelessly.
This isn’t always a bad thing or a negative ranking – many of the coaches on this list have quickly changed things, like four of the five who were on the list last week.
The second part is the coaches who have a string of victories better, otherwise.
Starting with the five who won’t be kicked out, but can use something after a few victories…
Five college football coaches who won’t be fired nor take any hot seat, but they can win big
5. Matt Campbell, Iowa
next one: Oklahoma (September 29)
Not only is Campbell not in any hot seat, but he’s on the hot list for nearly every open practice party available. There is one big problem right now – his team is last in the Big 12.
It’s the only team that hasn’t scored a major win in 12.
The defense is great, the team played well against Texas, and the four losses this year were by one point. And of course, Iowa beat Iowa, so all is well with the world.
There’s absolutely no pressure on him in terms of job – Iowa will do almost anything to keep him in place – but next is Oklahoma, West Virginia, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, and UCLA. Iowa must win three of those five just to get a bowl game.
4. Butch Jones, Arkansas
next one: in Louisiana
It’s lost that he was really good in Tennessee until it all fell apart in 2017.
He came in with a few seasons of nine wins and won three games in three attempts, then became a senior assistant before taking the Arkansas State job. 2-10 last year, the Red Wolves 2-5 this season with tough games against Louisiana, South Alabama, and Troy ahead.
Three of the five losses were close, but it would be very helpful to show signs of something positive for the future over the next six weeks.
3. Jim Leonard, Wisconsin
next one: Bordeaux
It’s almost certainly his mission no matter what, but that’s not 100% certain just yet.
The win over Northwestern was fantastic, but losing overtime to a modest brawl and Michigan State was hardly an added advantage.
The Badgers are 3-4, and while they won’t be blamed if the rest of the season fails to emerge from the sudden drop, they have won three of their last five games — Purdue, Maryland, in Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota — to reach the pot game. It would do wonders.
If not, there are several programs – (cough) in Nebraska (cough) in Colorado – that could be very interesting.
2. Tony Elliott, Virginia
next one: at Georgia Tech (October 20)
Not only is Virginia losing at an average ACC, it’s boring.
Last season’s Cavaliers had a very interesting show with QB Brennan Armstrong and her around the yard. This year’s team could barely score 17 points over Louisville.
He’s just getting started and hasn’t done anything yet with the program, but the second half is tough with Georgia Tech, Miami, North Carolina, and Pete, Coastal Carolina, at Virginia Tech.
Winning four of those games wouldn’t be difficult for most teams, but the 2-4 Cavaliers just need their first win in a month to move on.
1. Ken Wilson, Nevada
next one: San Diego State
The longtime Nevada assistant has been to the Pac-12 for several years. He came from Oregon to try to rebuild the program after former coach Jay Norville left for Colorado State – another job at Mountain West – for what was considered a better deal.
That didn’t sit well with Nevada fans, especially since Norville took so many top players with him.
Wilson’s team started the game 2-0, lost in a shootout with FCS’s Incarnate Word, and then lost on the way to Iowa and the Air Force — no big deal.
Then came Norville’s emotional comeback with the Colorado State team, which he did not win and did not suffer from injuries. It was a big moment for Nevada and Wilson football, and everything seemed to work out in an ugly game except for the final 17-14 in a loss.
He followed that up with a 31-16 loss to a team Hawaii that is among the worst in the country, and Nevada is battling a five-game losing streak with five of Mountain West’s top teams appearing.
Next up: 5 college football coaches who need to win now or not