This 2018 season feels like a uniquely good one for coach-gawking. College football is always sort of that way as our most coach-forward sport, but through a combination of a wild carousel ride last December and some summer developments we have a number of interesting scenarios about to unfold.
To put it another way: Even one of the worst hires for the 2018 season –– Herm Edwards at Arizona State –– has its own intrigue. A lot of intrigue, if you're Yahoo Sports columnist Pat Forde. He had Herm third on his list of the 25 Most Intriguing Coaches for 2018.
That's behind Chip Kelly at No. 2 (agree, very intriguing) and Urban Meyer at No. 1, the latter going from zero intrigue 2.5 weeks ago to all of the intrigue now.
Scott Frost made the list at No. 6, with Forde writing the following:
Orchestrated an undefeated miracle at Central Florida, then turned down Florida for the daunting challenge of coming home to reinvigorate his alma mater. Nebraska hasn’t factored into the national championship picture since 2001 and hasn’t won a conference title since 1999, two droughts Frost will be expected to end. Can he recruit well enough to make Nebraska what it was when he played quarterback for the Cornhuskers 21 years ago?
"Yes," is my answer to the question posed at the end there, but it's interesting that recruiting comes up at all. If the central question here, the intrigue so to speak, is "can Scott Frost return Nebraska to championship football," recruiting feels like just a small piece of any future answer. Recruiting is actually the least intriguing part of it, but I digress.
This is about how intriguing the coaching landscape is as a whole, and, while Forde mixes new faces/new places with tricky situations (Jim Harbaugh, Meyer, Ed Oregon) to form his list, I keep coming back to the new coaches. Kelly's act two? Fascinating. Texas A&M's investment in Jimbo Fisher? Frightening, but in an entertaining way. Dan Mullen back in the Swamp? Sure. Willie Taggart getting to live out every fan's dream at Florida State? Sign me up.
All interesting stories. Stories that will have their endings written based on the most basic of criteria: Did you win?
So with that in mind, let's play a game. Here's $100 to invest. (You're welcome.) The goal is to come as close as possible to doubling your money over the next five years, and you'll do that by investing you money in the following group of coaches to win a conference title in that time span: Mullen (Fla.), Frost (Neb.), Fisher (A&M), Taggart (FSU) and Kelly (UCLA).
The catch? You have to put some money on all five coaches, and the minimum investment is $5. Each investment only pays out once, so Jimbo Fisher can win the next five SEC titles at Texas A&M but the best you can do is double your initial investment. Closest to $200 five seasons from now wins.
Got it? Good. Prepare your portfolio.
Mine looks like this: Frost $65, Taggart $13, Mullen $10, Kelly $7, Fisher $5. We can chat about it in the comments.
The Grab Bag
- Thirteen North Carolina football players have been suspended for selling their team-exclusive Air Jordans.
- You could write a book about the photos from Ohio State fans' rally in support of Urban Meyer yesterday.
- Former Michigan QB Wilton Speight says he was lured to UCLA by Chip Kelly's pitch of an NFL-style offense. (Hmmm.)
- ICYMI: Busy day on the football front with a new commit and updates on the outside linebackers, Ben Stille and more.
Today's Song of Today