COLUMN: Let's talk some college football

Mark Spensley
Express Co-publisher


     I have three subjects to cover here in this week’s column concerning college football: coaches getting fired, the upcoming bowl season and a little Hawkeye football.

     Let’s jump right in with the coaching carousel that seems to constantly take place at most major institutions. LSU fires Les Miles, who in my opinion has been an outstanding coach for the Tigers. Miles was let go early in the season after starting with a 2-2 record.

     Miles spent 12 seasons at the helm of LSU. Ed Orgeron was named the interim coach and eventually given the job last week, possibly after new Texas coach Tom Herman turned LSU down.

     The Texas situation is even just as baffling to me. After three seasons at Texas, Charlie Strong was sent packing. At the time of his hiring he had completed 11-2 and 12-1 seasons at Louisville. So apparently he can coach.

     At Texas he was 16-21 in his three seasons. I question if Strong was given enough time to get his players in his system at Texas. As soon as he arrived in Austin he had to clean house, sending 10 players packing.

     He stumbled through numerous assistant coaches and that alone makes it difficult to find consistency. He leaves with 48 players who were underclassmen. That should have bought him some security.

     Last week I read an article on the pressure it takes to run a D1 football program. Thirty coaches were interviewed and it was telling about the abuses and cheating that is so prevalent in big time college football.

     I came away with the impression that the real villains in college football are the athletic directors of these major institutions. Makes me feel better about the type of coach Kirk Ferentz is for the Hawks.

     Speaking of the Hawkeyes, a fantastic ending to what seemed like a horrible season has landed the Hawks in the Outback Bowl against the Florida Gators. Here is hoping this group of seniors comes away with their first bowl win.

     And speaking of bowls, there are now 41 of them, which allow a 6-6 (4-5 conference) Indiana team and a 6-6 (3-6 conference) Maryland team land a bowl game.



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