Ranking the rookies
Tim Beckman goes for Big Ten win No. 1 today at Memorial Stadium. He’ll be the first to tell you the wait has been frustrating. How does he stack up with the 27 other rookie coaches? Our Marcus Jackson surveys the scene.
Off and running
These rookies are in line for a raise
— Matt Campbell, Toledo (7-1, 4-0 Mid-American) Tim Beckman’s former offensive coordinator has made the transition without a hitch and is the toast of the town after an upset win against No. 18 Cincinnati.
— Bob Davie, New Mexico (4-4, 1-2 Mountain West) Lobos fans are calling what the former Notre Dame coach is doing a miracle after New Mexico went 1-11 in each of the previous three seasons.
— Tim DeRuyter, Fresno State (5-3, 3-1 Mountain West)
— Kyle Flood, Rutgers (7-0, 4-0 Big East)
— Todd Graham, Arizona State (5-2, 3-1 Pac-12)
— Urban Meyer, Ohio State (8-0, 4-0 Big Ten)
— Jim Mora, UCLA (5-2, 2-2 Pac-12)
— Bill O’Brien, Penn State (5-2, 3-0 Big Ten)
— Kevin Sumlin, Texas A&M (5-2, 2-2, SEC) Former Houston coach turned down Illinois for the SEC, and behind an electric freshman quarterback has the Aggies in the Top 25.
Check back in a month to see if these guys end up on the good or bad list
— Paul Chryst, Pittsburgh (3-4, 0-3 Big East)
— Larry Fedora, North Carolina (5-3, 2-2 ACC) Along with defensive coordinator Vic Koenning (ever heard of him?), the Tar Heels are in hunt for division title and are third in ACC rush defense (123.9 yards).
— Hugh Freeze, Mississippi (4-3, 1-2 SEC)
— Mike Leach, Washington State (2-5, 0-4 Pac-12) Eccentric former Texas Tech coach, who recently banned his players from using Twitter, is struggling to get consistency while implementing his spread offense.
— Tony Levine, Houston (3-4, 2-1 Conference USA)
— Gus Malzahn, Arkansas State (5-3, 3-1 Sun Belt)
— Rich Rodriguez, Arizona (4-3, 1-3 Pac-12) While the quarterback he recruited to Michigan continues to set records, Rodriguez’s Wildcats have struggled with consistency after being ranked early in the season.
Stuck in the mud
They’re not winning many games — or winning over many fans
— Tim Beckman, Illinois (2-5, 0-3 Big Ten) Former Toledo coach has drawn criticism for everything from shoddy defense, an ineffective offense, dreadful special teams and his preference of chewing tobacco.
— Terry Bowden, Akron (1-7, 0-4 Mid-American) Former Auburn coach never has won fewer than three games in a full season, and if the Zips can find another win this season it will surpass win totals from each of the last two seasons.
— Norm Chow, Hawaii (1-5, 0-3 Mountain West)
— Justin Fuente, Memphis (1-6, 1-2 C-USA)
— Curtis Johnson, Tulane (1-6, 1-2 C-USA)
— Ellis Johnson, Southern Mississippi (0-7, 0-3 Conference USA)
— Jim McElwain, Colorado State (1-6, 0-3 Mountain West)
— Garrick McGee, UAB (1-6, 0-3 Conference USA)
— Charlie Molnar, Massachusetts (0-7, 0-4 Mid-American)
— Carl Pelini, Florida Atlantic (1-6, 0-4 Sun Belt)
— John L. Smith, Arkansas (3-4, 2-2 SEC)
— Charlie Weis, Kansas (1-6, 0-4 Big 12) Former Notre Dame coach has yet to beat an FBS team this season and made headlines after berating student reporter about unfavorable coverage of the team.