He writes about fans turning on coordinator geniuses when they become head coaches like they don’t sometimes deserve it. There is a fundamental truth in life that many times people rise to their level of incompetence. A great Master Sergeant doesn’t always make a great Lieutenant. A great Captain is not always going to be a great Admiral. You don’t find out until they try the next step and fail to adapt to the new and different responsibilities from their previous job.
Calling plays during a game and coaching quarterbacks or cornerbacks is only part of what makes teams great. A head coach has to manage all of the coaches, balance the needs of all parts of the program to get the best combination. A head coach who only cares about the offense or the defense will usually fail. Many HUNH offensive minded head coaches throw their defenses under the bus, wearing them out with little rest, turning the ball over, putting them in bad situations in order to maximize the offense’s effectiveness. They have a hard time attracting top defensive coordinators because of this.
A hotshot coordinator can come in, take someone else’s recruits, generate instant success for a while, but fail to build a complete package that will be sustainable. That is where Malzahn may be right now. Petrino may fall into this category as well. The advantage Malzahn has at Auburn is their corrupt recruiting machine gets great athletes for him and he doesn’t have to create the effective recruiting with no special help. But great athletes is not enough. Look at Les Miles if you don’t believe me. You can under achieve as a head coach and have a mediocre program even with lots of great athletes. Was last year the beginning of the end for Malzahn or just a bump in the road? We will see.