Coaching Hire to match expectations

Just for fun, I pulled the data from the last 4 seasons (eliminating CBB first year) for the SEC West teams. I split the data into overall records, conf records, average conf losses, # 9+ win seasons, & finally # 10+ win seasons. Obviously the data says Bama is at top…duh.

If you sort the data by conference record it breaks the 7 teams into 4 categories:

  1. BCS Final 4 expectations
  2. Top 15 BCS, but not quite in the elite status every year
  3. Batting 0.500 in the SEC, with 9+ wins expected every other year when you can go 5-3 or better in the SEC
  4. Bottom of the barrel

Last 4 Years…Overall…\tConf…Ave “Conf L’s”…\t9+ Season…10+ Season

Alabama…\t51 - 5 … 29 - 3 … 0.75 … 4 … 4

LSU…\t34 - 15 … 20 - 12 … 3.0 … 2 … 1
Auburn…\t33 - 18 … 18 - 14 … 3.5 … 1 … 1

Miss State… 34 - 17 … 17 - 15 … 3.75 … 2 … 2
Ole Miss… 30 - 20 … 16 - 16 … 4.0 … 2 … 1
Texas A&M\t… 31 - 20 … 15 - 17 … 4.25 … 0 … 0

Arkansas… 26 - 25 … 11 - 21 … 5.25 … 0 … 0

The top two categories have a long standing FBS history. For the rest, it tells me that going 8-4 is a good season, win the bowl game and you’re pretty happy. Win 6-6 or 7-4 plus a bowl victory and you’re okay. Less than that is obviously no good. Pop out a 5-3 sec record and your looking at a great season.

So there’s the FBS elite (cat 1&2), the middle of the road teams, and then the bottom of the barrel. Based upon Gus’s experience/history, he should get us into the middle of the road teams fairly quickly. Who knows if we can ever return back to our hey-days and become a consistent elite FBS program again. The odds are against us, not because we are poor ole Arkansas. Its because the elite is the elite programs and its hard to join that group. Being in the conversation every once and a while would be great. TAM has proven that by joining the SEC, they’ve gone no where and they are still just a middle of the road team. Only one time did they become a topic of conversation and that was lightning in the bottle “Johnny Football”.

If we land any of the other 3 named candidates, they will need time to build the program to the middle of the road teams. Its terrible that we’ve fallen into the ranks with Vandy, KY, and others in the bottom of the barrel. It is what it is. Who knows what any of these three guys can do. My guess is that the one that has the most dynamic personality will do the best (they all have proven skills). That is needed for up & coming programs that are recruiting (selling) kids that they can be the difference makers.

Just curious what in Gus’ experience and history indicates this, other than taking elite talent and coaching them to 7 and 8 win seasons…

First off, I’m not a Gus homer, nor am I advocating he should be the hire.

If you look at his history, He’s won at Tulsa, Ark St., and now Auburn. If you compare Sumlin’s results to his, with similar resources, Gus has better results.

I’m just saying that the data suggest he has a decent shot/probability to get us there. He has experience in the SEC and knows what it takes to win. The other guys bring the risk of unknown, which Gus doesn’t.

Bottom line for me is I will be happy if we get Gus because he likely will do better. THat’s not to say one of the others couldn’t do better.

Fair enough