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NFL Respect Coach Weis ND has no fear

Guest SirJohn

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Guest SirJohn

I think the part about the Fride and wading [pool was pretty funny.





A sweaty time for college coaches


Posted Friday, November 11, 2005 - 6:00 am




By Bart Wright




There's one four-letter word that binds together the vast majority of college football coaches this time of year.


Fear is the great connector for most coaches as they head into the final regular-season games, look ahead to rival games and consider what happens at the end of the season.


Among the 119 Division I-A schools, there are perhaps two dozen, give or take a few, who aren't worrying about employment next season. The safe ones are readily identifiable.


If you're a college football coach, your job is safe if:


Your last name is Carroll, Weis, Paterno, Brown or Shula.


You're in your first season and you've won at least a couple games.

Pretty much everyone else can trace their increased heart palpitations these last few games to a couple of obvious sources:


The Charlie Weis Factor -- Inside the NFL, people said for years Weis would make a big splash if ever given a shot and his first season at Notre Dame has been tantamount to a William "Refrigerator" Perry cannonball in a kiddie pool.


Every athletics director at a major college having issues meeting expectations has wondered who the next Charlie Weis is going to be.


The Al Groh Factor -- This one is more relevant in this part of the country than out West, and it will be an issue for every job change in the Southeast over the next few years.


Back in August, The Associated Press reported on the contract the University of Virginia extended to Groh covering his services through the 2010 season at an annual rate of $1.7 million, making him the third-highest paid coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference. He's a good coach, but Groh hasn't yet won an ACC title, hasn't taken a team to the BCS, his record heading into the weekend is 35-24 and he's pulling down $1.7 large.


Put it in the High Cost of Doing Business file when the going rate for college coaches who win 6 of 10 games is set at $1.7 million.


This is the part of the country where college football is supposed to matter most, so maybe it's understandable that the pay scale here would be so high.


The catch is that salary level generally increases at roughly the same degree as expectations, while patience usually decreaases at a corresponding rate.


That explains the sweaty palms on most college coaches in this part of the country at this time of the year. Capable people are waiting in line for heads to roll, many of them from the Weis neighborhood of deserving NFL assistants. Here are three:


Butch Davis -- Probably the biggest threat to an underperforming Southeastern coach. Davis won big at Miami, has been through the NFL and is a specialist in recruiting the fertile Florida recruiting grounds to a school that wants to get good, fast. He's smart, tough, runs a clean program and he's ready.


Ed Donatell -- Want a defensive-minded motivator with great organizational skills? The Falcons' defensive coordinator is in the Green Room of NFL assistants waiting for a call. His Packers' teams led the NFL in takeaways three years running, so think of him as a guy who will make special teams snap, crackle and pop.


Jerry Gray -- A rarity in that he's a great defensive player, growing up in Texas and playing for the Longhorns, who became an outstanding defensive coach in the NFL. The Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator turned out a unit that led the NFL in turnovers forced last year and is always in the top five statistically.


The trends are set and everyone wants to locate the next great NFL assistant. If you're a college coach in the Southeast on shaky ground, take life one day at a time.

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Guest Snatchy_McPants

Interesting article. I love the recognition they give to CW. It also hits on a point that has baffled me for some time. Why all the fuss over Al Groh? Yes, he appears to be one of the best recruiters in the country, but why can't he win anything big with them? The ACC hasn't always been the monster that it is today. Plus, just how do you lose to Fresno St. in a bowl game? I have to imagine his seat gets hotter by the second.

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