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Texas now jumps to #1 with their defeat of previously #1 Oklahoma (though QB Bradford should still be a Heisman frontrunner IMO), and JoePa's Nittany Lions jump to #3. Alabama stayed at #2 during their off week (and I bet they're glad they weren't playing given the upsets!).
Florida completely annihilated LSU, handing down the biggest beat down ever of a defending National Champion with their 51-21 butt kicking!
Previously #3 Missouri lost a bit of their luster - and fell to #11 - by losing to Oklahoma State, while that win vaulted the Cowboys all the way up from #17 to #8.
And now the breaking news is that the woefully disappointing Clemson Tigers - ranked #9 at the start of the season - have fired Tommy Bowden in light of the Tigers' plummet completely out of the Top 25 and posting of a mediocre 3-3 record; 1-2 in a conference they were projected to win.
All in all it's been another GREAT college season to date!! As one who thinks it's absolutely ridiculous to rank teams before the season even starts - I think the first poll should come after one month - I LOVE watching all the upsets happen every week!!
Well, Tommy Bowden was fired* last week by Clemson after a 10 year run, Ty Willingham was ousted in Washington (but will coach out the season) the week before that, and now it looks like 16 year coach Phil Fulmer will also be out at Tennessee at the end of this season. Those are some pretty high profile firings so far this year, and there's still 4 weeks to go!
Bowden, who had just signed a contract extension at the end of the 2007 season, was 72-45 overall at Clemson, with 8 bowl appearances in his 10 years. His downfall, however, was a failure to ever win the ACC title. His firing has not been without repercussions, as the Tigers have already lost 5 "name" recruits who had committed to Clemson before Bowden was let go and who now want to take their skills elsewhere.
Fulmer's firing is also a head scratcher on the face of it. His career record is 147-45 (.766), he was 10-4 in 2007 and 9-4 in 2006, has taken Tennessee to a bowl game 15 of his 16 seasons, and only had 1 losing season in 16 years when he went 5-6 in 2005, though he was 10-3 in each of the two seasons before that. Fulmer's downfall, similar to Bowden's, would seem to be struggles within conference despite overall winning records; Tennessee is only 14-12 in their last 26 SEC games and hasn't won the SEC since 1998.
Tyrone Willingham's is by far the easiest of these to understand in my opinion. Since his arrival in Washington Willingham has not had a single winning season, going 11-32 over the past 4 years (including 0-8 this year, and counting) and has, obviously, not taken the team to a bowl game during his tenure. Add to that his losing record his last two years at Notre Dame (and two bowl game losses there) and, despite him being by all accounts a great guy, he is arguably just not a very good coach... at least not since he left Stanford.
So, thoughts? Did any, all, or none of these guys deserved to get fired in your opinion? Who else do you think will be on the Division 1 coaches chopping block at season's end?
*technically he "stepped down", but that is in name only and we all know that he was forced out in reality.
I live in Texas......... and football is religion here. My oldest son is at Texas Tech (guns up!) and I live about 15 miles from University of Texas. I have been a fan of UT since i moved to Texas in 96. I have always been a fan of college football... it is so much better than the NFL (although I like that too)
So I am currently reading a book called "Backyard Brawl" which is the story of the rivalry between Texas and Texas A&M. What a great book....... since I'm not a native Texan, some of this stuff is new to me. But I have been enjoying this book very much.
Brings tears to my eyes every time I think about it.