COLUMNS

Familiar faces at new places

Kyle Riviere
Weekly Citizen Sports Editor Kyle Riviere

If you're going to be a college football coach these days, you better win, and you better win fast.

Being president of the United States might be much more stressful and demanding but at least when you're president, you have at least four years to blame the guy that proceeded you. College football coaches don't get that luxury. Athletic directors live by the motto, "What have you done for me lately?"

It doesn't matter if you've won before. If you start losing, you might see Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones heading into the AD's office with black suits and sunglasses ready to erase the memories with one red flash.

That was clearly evident this offseason as coaches around the country dropped like flies. And with their departure, it was a mad dash to fill in the vacant spots with some of the hot names on the coaching carousel.

Despite winning a national title two seasons ago, Auburn fired Gene Chizik after a disastrous 3-9 year.

In his place, they bring in a guy in Gus Malzahn that was the offensive coordinator of that championship team. It'll be tough sledding for him.

His system goes as the quarterback goes, and he doesn't have one right now that can quickly turn things around

Tennesse fired Derek Dooley after just three years. In his place, they bring in Cincinnati's Butch Jones.

Jones has been good but not great, however, he inherits a Volunteer squad with a lot of talent. If he can find any way to sure up that defense, he could win in a hurry.

Arkansas decided to cut ties with John L. Smith after a failed one-year experiment. In his place, Wisconsin's Brett Bilema makes the long trip down south.

I think this is the best hire of the offseason so far. Bilema's style is a perfect fit for the new change in conference.

Arkansas will finally scrap their finesse spread attack and get back to what it takes to win the SEC and eventually win the national championship: downhill running and solid defense.

South Florida parted ways with Skip Holtz and brought in a young, enthusiastic guy in Willie Taggart that turned Western Kentucky around. We'll see if he's ready for the big time.

And to fill in the open spot at Cincinnati, Tommy Tuberville abruptly left Texas Tech. It's not a good look for Tuberville. It appears he saw that the Big 12 was tougher than he expected, so he bolted to the much weaker Big East.

To fill in the open gap at Texas Tech, the Red Raiders hired Texas A&M offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury.

It's a great fit. Kingsbury played quarterback for Texas Tech not so long ago and knows that system backwards and forwards. He's an aggressive play-caller and at 33, he should bring a lot of fire and exuberance to the program.