USC’s Clay Helton Leads Pack With Arkansas’ Chad Morris Rising Fast
Why some teams are on a roll – Alabama, quite literally – others can’t get out of gear.
And because of that, their leaders are sitting on the hot seat of college football coaches. Here’s the Top 5 coaches currently on the hottest seats (and as of this writing we’re still in the middle of September.
I’ll update this article as necessary during the season. Most likely, I’ll be adding names rather than subtracting so it could become the Top 10 rather than the Top 5.
1.) Clay Helton
I’ve questioned this guy from the start and USC fans scoffed, but they are finally beginning to realize Sam Darnold masked a lot of Helton’s coaching deficiencies. This is all you need to know about Helton’s coaching acumen: After the Trojans shanked three punts and had a field goal blocked and returned for a touchdown, on a play in which the kicker tore an ACL and was lost for the season in a blowout loss to Texas, Helton said he’s “not concerned” about the special teams.
The loss to the Longhorns was so bad Helton managed to take his opposing coach Tom Herman, off the Texas hot seat.
This guy isn’t even good enough to wind up as an “offensive analyst” at Alabama. Tho if Butch Jones is getting more involved in the program, Nick Saban may need someone to wash the windows on his Mercedes.
2.) Chad Morris
When fans are already calling for your head three games into your first season, with one reporter going so far as to asking “is Chad Morris In Over His Head,?” then you know you’re on shaky ground. Getting whipped by Colorado State was bad enough but getting embarrassed at home by North Texas State has fans seeing shadows of John L. Smith.
3.) Willie Taggert
The Blazing Saddles coach as I call him (get it, “Taggert!”) has Seminole fans in shock. Is the team really this bad? Is the coach really that bad!? Can you imagine what Clemson’s defensive line will do to that offensive line? Osceola and Renegade better bring a few white towels along with that spear.
4.) Gus Malzahn
Sure, he just signed a fat multi-year contact extension but this isn’t Arizona (keep reading); it’s the football-mad SEC. Auburn folks were quietly grumbling about the offense (again) after the Washington win and certainly after the frequent disappearances against LSU and losing to Coach O has turned up the heat on the Plains.
5.) Chip Kelly
“I’ve already given up on the season,” one Bruin fan told me after UCLA got thumped by Fresno State to fall to 0-3, which includes a loss to Cincinnati. So far, there’s no evidence of Kelly’s arrival in Westwood. The team is playing penalty- and interception-filled games with no emotion.
College Football Coaches On The Warm Seat
!.) Kevin Sumlin
This guy is like a cat. He always manages to land on his feet, despite clearly not being able to coach without Johnny Manziel as his quarterback. He practically destroyed a “sure thing” Heisman Trophy finalist just two games into the season and the team has been pathetic on both sides of the ball. Sumlin will likely be saved (at least this year) by two things: the weak Pac-12 Conference and the fact that he can somewhat hide in the desert. If Arizona fans cared more about football they would be sending Sumlin out to the cactus patch.
2.) Scott Frost
Nebraska fans got chills when Frost was hired and now that’s beginning to thaw. A loss to Troy has them a bit nervous that this rebuild will take a lot longer than expected when Frost arrived on campus. He did lose his quarterback for the season but some bad losses are ahead of the Huskers and the temperature may be quickly rising in Lincoln.
3.) Tom Herman
Helton got Herman off the hot seat for now, but as one Texas grad told me after the loss to Maryland “nothing’s changed since that National Championship loss to Alabama. Same thing – lack of emotion, playing in only occasional spurts. I thought this guy was going to different, but I guess not.”