by Keith Aksel
On Tuesday we wrote that college football coaches win national titles in chunks at the beginning, middle, or end of their careers, but not across eras. Coaches that win multiple titles win them within a ten year window, outside of which they may have league success, but not win it all.
This historical chunking trend has big-time implications for today’s college game. It shows us that it is just as reasonable for programs to stick with a coach for the long-haul as it is to cycle through new coaches every few seasons. One explanation offered regarding modern college football coaching careers is that fan bases demand winning faster from new hires than ever before. Commentators seem fixated on what they think is a new era of intense “win now” culture in sports. The reality is that college football coaches have dealt with impatient fan bases for many decades. Ohio State's Woody Hayes was famously being run out of town before the 1968 season, just seven years removed from his THIRD national title. “Win now” has always been a part of college coaching at the highest level.
by Keith Aksel
No major American sport demands higher rates of winning from its coaches than college football. On an annual basis, coaches from big-time programs are fired after 9-3 or 8-4 seasons, a success rate coaches in any other sport would likely kill to achieve. Facts like this seem to underscore the point that winning on a weekly basis matters more in college football than anywhere else.
That said, it is ultimately conference and national championships, not winning percentages, which define a coach’s career. One historical trend fans should consider in evaluating any coach’s performance is that national championships are won in chunks; coaches in the modern-era (from 1972 to now) typically win titles at the early, middle, or final stages of their careers, but rarely win titles across these eras. Those coaches that have won multiple championships win them within a limited ten year window of time, outside of which they may enjoy success in conference, but never win it all again.
Part 1: Richard Nixon, Sports Fan?
by: Chris Foss
The next time that you find yourself ashamed of being a sports fan, of being so emotionally invested in a game that you think has zero percent bearing on the outcome of your life yet will affect every fiber of your emotional being for the next day and a half, just consider that fandom does not solely afflict the Everywoman or the Everyman such as yourself. For an example, consider