Coaching Hot Seat Rankings - Conference USA
UTEP head coach Mike Price
UTEP head coach Mike Price
Posted Apr 5, 2010

Which coaches are on the hottest seats? Beyond just the idea of a coach possibly being fired for not winning, the rankings are also based on who's under the most pressure. Ranking all the Conference USA coaches and how much pressure they're under.

2010 Spring Preview
Coaching Hot Seats - C-USA

2010 Spring Preview 
- No. 20 Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 1-10) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 11-20) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 21-30) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 31-40) 
- Top 50 Non-Conference Games (No. 41-50)  
- No. 19 Is this it for the Big 12? 
- No. 18 Just how close the Big East has come to a BCS title?
- No. 17 Did ACC expansion work?
- No. 16 Why does the Pac 10 need USC to be good?
- No. 15 Just how hot is the Big Ten for expansion? 
- No. 14 Does the SEC title = BCS title? 
- No. 13 What's going to make you grouchy? 
- No. 12 The new superstars 
- No. 11 Ranking all 120 coaches and their hot seat status 

- ACC CoachesBig East Coaches | Big Ten Coaches | Big East Coaches
- Big 12 Coaches | C-USA Coaches | Ind CoachesMAC Coaches | M-West Coaches
- Pac 10 Coaches | SEC Coaches | Sun Belt Coaches | WAC Coaches 

By Pete Fiutak  

A hot seat isn't always what the media makes it out to be. When a coach is on the proverbial hot seat, usually it means he needs to win now or he'll be fired, but it could also mean a lot more. It could mean a coach needs to start winning because he's under pressure (Mark Richt), but isn't under real threat of being fired. It could mean he's winning, but is in an impossible situation and can't afford a slip (Jim Tressel after last year's loss to Purdue). Or it could mean he needs to win big just because he does (Urban Meyer).

So keeping in mind that for this, Hot Seat doesn't necessarily mean win-or-get-fired and it's more about who's under a lot of pressure (and yeah, in some cases it is a win-or-else situation), here's the ranking of the all 120 coaches and where they fit in on the warm butt scale.

Ranked from highest to lowest on the pressure scale

Bob Toledo, Tulane
Toledo was handed a spoiled sandwich and has been asked to do miracles. His teams haven't had enough success even with all the things dragging the program down.
Status: He's in a tough situation, but he needs to come up with a good year and a sign of hope for the near future.

Neil Callaway, UAB
In a tough situation, Callaway has done what he can with a program that struggles to get the better players. However, he needs to start producing more wins.
Status: Another losing season might bring a change just so the program can try something different.

Mike Price, UTEP
It's not just that Price's Miner teams aren't winning, it's that his teams keep collapsing. He has been around since 2004 and the team isn't getting much better.
Status: He's still a big name and a big personality, but it's the seventh year under his guidance and the results had better come.

David Bailiff, Rice
After a monster 2008, the Owls fell off the map with a ton of coaching and talent turnover. Bailiff can still survive another bad year, and maybe one more, but it would be nice to find the explosion of a few seasons ago.
Status: He's fine for now. There aren't the big expectations at Rice to demand a win-or-else season quite yet.

Ruffin McNeill, East Carolina
A terrific get for the Pirates, McNeill should've been given more of a shot to stay at Texas Tech to be the head man. However, he has a ton of pressure on his shoulders replacing Skip Holtz, who won the last two Conference USA titles.
Status: This will be an interesting coach to follow. Players love him and the expectations are high that he can keep the success rolling.

Larry Fedora, Southern Miss
There was a little bit of controversy about the coaching change in 2008, but not because of Fedora as a choice. However, Southern Miss was a Conference USA power under Jeff Bower.
Status: As long as he gets to a bowl game this year, he's fine, but he'll need to get USM in the mix for the conference title soon.

Doc Holliday, Marshall
Since he's not Mark Snyder, Marshall fans already like him. There's going to be some leeway with the belief that he's the one who can make the team strong again.
Status: The hopes are sky high. He knows what the fan base is looking for both personality-wise and on the field, and he should bring it.

Larry Porter, Memphis
Tommy West parlayed a wee bit of success into a long, mostly unsuccessful Tiger career. All Porter has to do is not fall flat on his face and he's around for a while.
Status: While he's not as splashy as some of the other new Conference USA hires, he's well-respected.

Todd Graham, Tulsa
The offense and the team were still impressive last season, but the loss of offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn to Auburn was a big deal. Graham has to prove he can win without him.
Status: The success in recent years should keep Graham secure for at least one more year without a problem.

George O'Leary, UCF
Notre Dame's loss has been UCF's major coup. O'Leary has been everything the program could've dreamed of since coming aboard in 2004.
Status: You'd think he has been far enough removed from the résumé controversy to get a few bigger job offers, but it hasn't happened. He's at UCF as long as he wants to be.

Kevin Sumlin, Houston
After taking what Art Briles had started and making it even better (at least statistically on offense), Sumlin is a red hot coaching candidate. However, it would be nice if he could put together a defense.
Status: Any more success and he'll be on the short list for every big job opening. Houston is renting him.

June Jones, SMU
SMU had done nothing since the pre-Death Penalty days, and Jones swooped in and made the team interesting and successful again. It's not like the Pony Express is back, but a bowl win will do for now.
Status: Jones isn't likely to get a big offer from a bigger program, but he has a chance to put his stamp on SMU football and become a folk hero.