Each year at SEC Media Days, you can’t help but daydream (some of the coaches’ speeches are really boring) about the 14 guys up there and wonder how many of them will be there the next year.
Sometimes coaching changes come out of nowhere and surprise you. I don’t think many of us thought we were seeing the last of Les Miles two years ago or Jim McElwain last year.
But stuff happens.
As we get ready for MD2018 in Atlanta, here’s a look at the hot seat index for the 14 current SEC coaches:
Ed Orgeron, LSU: The over-under for wins this year is seven in Vegas. That doesn’t say a lot about the confidence that Coach O will have the kind of season LSU fans demand. It was a dumb move to make him the guy in the first place.
Derek Mason, Vanderbilt: Look at the Commodores schedule. It’s difficult to find a path to four wins. Even 4-8 only makes him 22-39 in five seasons without a winning record. How seriously does Vandy take football?
Barry Odom, Missouri: Making Derek Dooley his offensive coordinator could be the kiss of death. Odom did a great job at the end of last year and he’s their guy but let’s see what happens.
Matt Luke, Ole Miss: Luke loves his school and is trying to lead it out of NCAA hell, but a really bad season may make the administration wonder if it couldn’t so better.
And that’s it. Now, things can change. Eve with his new contract, Gus Malzahn could get into trouble with a bad season. But you have five new coaches in the league who presumably will be fine and you have Nick Saban, who doesn’t sound like he wants to go anywhere, and the red-hot Kirby Smart.
South Carolina loves them some Will Muschamp although a disappointing season could warm up the seat. By disappointing, we’re talking 4-8.
Which brings us to Mark Stoops at Kentucky. The Vegas over/under is 5.5 wins and I’m guessing anything under will bring up the hot seat discussions. But he has a big buyout and is Kentucky really going to do any better? He has brought some consistency to the program and improved recruiting.
Anyway, all heck could break loose and we could see another five new coaches next year. I’d advise all of the current coaches not to mention death threats.