Sport 2021 Hot Seat Rankings: Manny Diaz, Mike Norvell heat up as Jim Harbaugh among coaches cooling off
Ravens' John Harbaugh: Fourth-down decision was a no-brainer
The Baltimore Ravens capped off their dramatic 36-35 comeback victory over the Kansas City Chiefs with a fourth-down conversion that kept Patrick Mahomes from getting the ball back. © Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh The decision to convert on the 4th-and-1 was a risky one, but according to head coach John Harbaugh, it was a no-brainer. "There wasn't (any doubt)," Harbaugh said postgame via CBS Sports, indicating he was pretty sure Andy Reid and the Chiefs would have done the same thing. "I bet they're going for it, too, with Patrick Mahomes.
It's never too early to warm up the hot seat. Just look at September. We take no pleasure in reminding you that three of thenow sit unoccupied. UConn's Randy Edsall, USC's Clay Helton and Georgia Southern's Chad Lunsford were all fired last month.
The hot seat has warmed significantly five weeks into the season for the coaches listed below. Remember, we're early in the process. In 2020, the coaching carousel silly season lasted eight months. When Buffalo hired Mo Lindquist on May 7, it had been eight months since Southern Miss' Jay Hopson resigned. Yes, the last silly season lasted longer than the 2020 regular season.
'Do you wanna go for this?': John Harbaugh, Lamar Jackson's 4th down decision lifts Ravens over Chiefs
Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh called out to QB Lamar Jackson about going for it on a pivotal 4th down that sealed Sunday's win over the Chiefs.Not that Lamar Jackson hasn't earned it – he is a former MVP and on Sunday in the Ravens' 36-35 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs displayed once again why he is one of the best in the game.
A reminder: This is where we started with our annual, and here's how the hot seats of all . Now we are taking a second look a month into 2021.
Below is our ratings key. Here's how the 130 FBS coaches sorted out before the season began. There were nine on the proverbial hot seat (rated 5 or 4) entering the season with another 14 starting to feel the heat (rated 3).
|Rating||What it means||Coaches|
Win or be fired
Start improving now
Pressure is mounting
All good ... for now
Safe and secure
That leads us to our updated Hot Seat Rankings. Here's how things are shaking out just over a month into the season. Take a look below.
|Butch Davis||5||Butch Davis, FIU, 5: Davis used to rule the world as a Super Bowl-winning assistant, an NFL head coach and the Miami coach who turned around the program in the 1990s before setting it up for its 2001 national championship. Halfway through his fifth season at FIU, he has lost 11 of his last 12 games (1-4 this season). At the end of Davis' five-year deal, the administration may not have to pay a buyout for the 69-year-old. Preseason rating: 3|
|Steve Addazio||4||Not even halfway through the second year of a five-year deal, this hiring seems like a mistake. Addazio and his grinding offensive style were a bad fit from the start. The Rams have won only two of his first eight games. In a progressive community with one of the country's best on-campus stadiums, this program deserves excitement. Instead, it got a career 59-61 run-conscious coach who thinks the spread is only something the opponent is favored by each week. There were allegations of player mistreatment last year. I have no idea if the administration wants to pay the buyout, but after Dec. 2, it's $3 million. Preseason rating: 3|
|Doug Martin||4||Nice-guy Martin led the Aggies to their first bowl berth in 57 years in 2017. Since then, there have been only seven wins (three vs. FBS). Amid conference realignment, New Mexico State has league aspirations after languishing for years as an independent playing too many guarantee games. The school would owe no buyout. This is the last year of a five-year deal. Preseason rating: 2|
|Dino Babers||4||A last-second loss to Florida State makes Babers 6-17 in his last 23 games (3-15 in last 18 ACC games). A 3-2 start has brightened prospects, however, especially the tight win over Liberty. Last week, WR Taj Harris became the fifth player to leave the program since fall camp. Preseason rating: 3|
|Nick Rolovich||4||This could be one of the more notable departures of 2021. Rolovich put the administration through a ringer with his refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccine. He not only set a bad example for his players, but as the state's highest-paid public employee, he basically spit in the face of public health. Sources indicated Rolovich was going to apply for an exemption, but that hasn't happened. At the Pac-12 media day -- he did not attend in person -- Rolo kept repeating he would follow the vaccine mandate without saying he'd get vaccinated. He has until Oct. 18, per state employee mandate, or supposedly faces termination. This has been a huge distraction for the Cougars. Preseason rating: 1|
|Manny Diaz||3||There is negative buzz about Diaz's job security in his third season. That buzz is aided by Mario Cristobal having Oregon in the top 10. However, a Miami Herald report said Diaz is safe if he wins eight. A loss to Alabama was expected, but by 31? Michigan State overwhelmed the 'Canes at home in hot conditions that should benefit Miami. The latest gut-wrencher was missing a game-winning field goal against Virginia. In a wide-open ACC, the 'Canes still have a chance. Diaz's buyout is reportedly $8 million. Preseason rating: 2|
|Mike Norvell||3||The offseason was encouraging. Recruiting went well. QB McKenzie Milton transferred in. The Noles looked … better. Then came the season that's been a near-total collapse with an 0-4 start. There was shuffling at QB and an inexcusable Hail Mary breakdown against Jacksonville State. Norvell's buyout is probably too big to pull the trap door now, but the frustration is mounting. He signed a six-year, $26.5 million deal in December 2019 after replacing Willie Taggart. FSU types can't fire two consecutive coaches after only two seasons, can they? Preseason rating: 1|
|Herm Edwards||4||Winning cures everything, and right now, the Sun Devils are winning big. At 4-1, ASU is the favorite in the Pac-12 South. The defense (Herm's specialty) is the best in the league by far. QB Jayden Daniels just came off one of the best games of his career. There remains a damning dossier detailing an alleged improper scheme during COVID-19. Is Herm in trouble? Let's put it this way: It isn't a positive that he was -- at least -- in charge during the violations. A reminder: Winning percentage tends to trump most everything. Preseason rating: 4|
|Ed Orgeron||4||Is it me, or has Orgeron's job security become a week-to-week proposition? The loss to Auburn didn't help. The Tigers are now 3-2 with Alabama and Georgia running away with the SEC. Back in July, we said Orgeron needed to start 3-1. The Tigers did just that, but those three wins were over McNeese State, Central Michigan and Mississippi State. Now comes the heart of the schedule: Kentucky, Florida, Alabama, Ole Miss. Orgeron remains a defendant in a $50 million lawsuit. If things sour, does LSU have the stones to fire Coach O for cause? Preseason rating: 4|
|Walt Bell||4||There doesn't seem to be a "there" there at UMass. The program plays football … to play football -- taking guarantee games so it can balance the budget. Bell is 1-20 in his third season. Instead of disparaging UMass, maybe this was an unfortunate career move for Bell, who is a respected former Maryland and Florida State offensive coordinator. The guess here is that the school won't make a move even if it wanted to. The buyout as of Dec. 3 in $1.1 million. Preseason rating: 4|
|Scott Frost||4||To be fair, thinks are looking up for the Huskers. They didn't crater after the loss to Illinois. QB Adrian Martinez has evened out. Frost has a big opportunity to land a signature win vs. Michigan. Nebraska made progress in close losses to Oklahoma and Michigan State. The remainder of the schedule is brutal with at least three ranked teams (Michigan, Ohio State and Iowa) but all three are at home. If the Huskers pull an upset, a bowl game is possible. That could complicate things. AD Trev Alberts made it clear he was in charge when the alleged NCAA violations came to light. Preseason rating: 5|
|Jim Harbaugh||3||The Big Ten East is the second-toughest division in ball, and Harbaugh is 5-0 in it. That said, if he loses for a seventh straight time to Ohio State, the crooked number next to his name will get … crookeder. There finally seems to be an identity with the Wolverines. Blake Corum is on pace for 1,200 rushing yards. QB Cade McNamara has yet to throw a pick. Coordinator Mike McDonald's defense is allowing less than 300 yards per game. It's nice to see Harbaugh smiling again. Now the question: Will another 10-win season without one of those 10 being vs. Ohio State keep that grin on his face? Preseason rating: 4|
|Justin Fuente||3||We called out Fuente in July for the Hokies' worst season in 28 years (a COVID-19-ravaged 5-6 in 2020). VT then opened the season beating North Carolina. Some credit is due here after a 3-1 start. That's encouraging, but now things get serious. Notre Dame and Pittsburgh in the next two weeks. If Fuente posts any sort of winning season, the odds are in his favor. His buyout is reportedly $10 million before Dec. 15. Preseason rating: 5|
NBA Power Rankings: No. 1 Nets get richer, Lakers cling to top-five spot, Blazers sink after free agency moves .
NBA offseason deals have affected the pecking order heading into next seasonNow that we have a clearer picture of what teams will look like, we've updated the NBA Power Rankings we published immediately after the NBA Finals, with some significant changes. The Los Angeles Lakers dropped one spot to fifth after their offseason moves, largely due to questions about defense. Meanwhile, the Miami Heat moved up from 11th to seventh after the additions of Kyle Lowry and PJ Tucker, arguably the most impactful moves of the free agency period so far.