Director Chip Rives discusses his documentary on Phi Slama Jama

via Bstrawradio
via Bstrawradio

ESPN’s new 30 for 30 documentary on the Phi Slama Jama era at the University of Houston’s men’s basketball program aired last month and director Chip Rives sat down with The Weekly Brew podcast to discuss the film. Listen to the interview below, starting at the 16 minute, 23-second mark:

and via iTunes here.

State of the Program: Thoughts on the Herman era and the future of UH football

via Stephen Pinchback/ Houston Athletics
via Stephen Pinchback/ Houston Athletics

“If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change.” -Tancredi, The Leopard

When Tony Levine was relieved of duties after three underwhelming seasons and replaced by Tom Herman, the only thing I wanted from the new coach was a conference championship victory and nothing more. Herman exceeded those expectations and I’m not upset that he’s left for Austin because he’s left the program better off than when he arrived.

In spite of all of the records shattered during the Case Keenum and Kevin Sumlin era from 2008-11, the Cougars football program had last won a conference title in 2006 under Art Briles before Herman came to town. The Coogs fell short of victory in 2009 and 2011, so my only expectations for Tom Herman were to bring another conference title to Cullen Blvd. Herman built out a very solid staff and was able to help develop Greg Ward Jr.’s raw talent into being one of the best quarterbacks in the country. Herman and company had a few close calls in 2015 but were able to win the American title and upset Florida State in the Peach Bowl. It was Houston’s first conference title in nine seasons and biggest bowl victory in a generation. Since he already exceeded expectations in year one, anything after that I considered an added bonus.

It’s a testament to how excellent 2015 was for the Coogs that 2016 felt like a bit of letdown, but I don’t think there’s a single Coog fan out there who would trade our victories against Oklahoma and Louisville for wins over Navy, SMU, and Memphis. Putting the beatdown on Oklahoma in front of a national tv audience to kickoff the season in a sold out NRG Stadium and the absolute whoppin’ of the Heisman frontrunner Lamar Jackson and Louisville were an incredible validation of the Houston program and proof of how far we’ve come in just a few short seasons. Every recruit and fan across the country has been put on notice to what this program’s potential is.

We all thought that maybe there was a slight chance that Herman was different than all of the others coaches, that he truly wanted to be here for the long haul, but I don’t think anyone is really surprised he left. Coaches want to win a national championship and there’s about 20-25 college football programs that have the ability to compete at a consistent level to win a national title, and the University of Texas is one of those programs. That being said, Herman has helped show how close UH was to potentially crashing the college football playoffs. A few less mistakes against Navy and Memphis, and not having a meltdown against SMU, and the Coogs would’ve secured a playoff spot for 2016. Yes, it would’ve been incredibly hard to do, but a UH or a Boise is still more likely to make the playoffs than a Kansas, Kentucky, or a Purdue. For example: Maybe Purdue could get good enough with the right coach to upset an Ohio State, but to think they could pull off wins over Michigan, Penn State, Wisconsin, and Michigan State all in the same season and win a Big Ten title is far less likely than Houston or Boise running the table and making a cinderella run into the playoffs. Not all Power 5 programs are equal and be proud that Houston, as a G5, is considered by many people to be a better job than about half of the P5. That’s why Dana Holgorsen, Mike Leach, and Sonny Dykes are all rumored to be considering UH. It’s easier to recruit to Houston than to Morgantown or to the Palouse.

There’s going to be a lot of people who urge the Houston administration to find a coach who’s going to be here for the long haul, whatever that means. Those thoughts are well-intentioned but severely misguided. Tony Levine may have wanted to stay at UH for the long-haul and we all saw how well those three seasons went under his leadership. I’ll take fifty Tom Herman’s coming to town and winning conference championships and then leaving UH after two seasons than another Levine era with losses to Texas State and UTSA. All we need to do is win big time football games. A mediocre coach who wants to be here for the long-term is far more damaging for our program than a great coach who wants to win big and leverage us into a better position.

There’s nothing to be upset at UT about. Let their fans talk trash and talk down to UH all they want. It’s a huge validation for our program and our university that the big, rich University of Texas has to come down to lil’ ole U of H to take our head coach. It means they aren’t doing much innovating and growing of homegrown talent over at the 40 acres. The University of Houston is a home of innovation and if UT feels they need some of that UH swagger to improve their subpar football program than more power to them. Herman didn’t leave Houston because there’s something wrong with us, but because we gave him the chance to prove himself, win big, and to make himself a household name in college football. We should be flattered the rest of the state is recognizing our talents because it means we’re better at developing coaches then they are.

I’m still somewhat surprised UT pounced on Herman so quickly without taking the time to do due diligence in interviewing other major candidates, but Herman’s agent certainly got earned his commission by starting a bidding frenzy for his services. Herman is almost exactly the same candidate that Charlie Strong was in 2014: Herman went 22-4 at UH and Strong went 23-3 in his last two years at Louisville. The best coaches in the business (Saban, Harbaugh, and Meyer) all had previous Power 5 experience before their current positions, so I’m a bit surprised UT didn’t throw $6+ million a year at Chris Petersen, Mike MacIntyre, Larry Fedora, or even a Dabo Swinney or David Shaw. All of them are very successful Power 5 coaches who’ve done very well at their non-traditional P5 programs and would do even better with the resources in Austin. But apparently UT is so desperate and the hype around Herman has reached the stratosphere and the UT administration needs to keep their rabid boosters in-line as much as hire the most qualified coach, so they chose the flash-in-the-pan over someone less sexier but with a better resume. Herman has been a head coach all of two seasons and both of those were in the G5. Yes, Charlie Strong just lost to Kansas but Herman couldn’t figure out how not to get blown out by the lowly SMU Mustangs. Oh well, Austin will either show that Herman is the second coming of Meyer or he’ll crumble under the reality of the soap opera of Machiavellian backstabbing and political intrigue and wish he never left the relatively serene confines of the Third Ward. Coog fans should hope he does well for the simple fact that his successes, like those of Briles and Sumlin before him, shows every other coach in college football that Houston is a place where you can win. Better to be a place where the next Tom Herman knows he can come in and win big then for coaches to think this is a dead-end job.

Herman had all of the hype but he didn’t build this program on his own. Herman built upon the foundation laid by, not just the aforementioned Briles and Sumlin before him, but also the legacies of Bill Yeoman, Jack Pardee, and John Jenkins who made the University of Houston known for good, innovative football. Herman was merely a continuation of our legacy of successes. A program can be Power 5 but it doesn’t mean that they have the leadership in place to compete at a high level, which is another reason why Houston is a better job than most people realize and better than half of the major conference programs. President and Chancellor Khator, Chairman Fertitta, and AD Yurachek have all been instrumental as well for laying the foundation here at UH. With all three of them still in power I’m not worried about our future. A new coach can easily come in here and pick up where Herman left off and continue to build on his successes.

And yes, it sucks that the Big 12 turned down UH then one of their school’s took our head coach, but if the Coogs can keep winning and keep selling out TDECU then I wouldn’t be surprised if we’re given a P5 invite during the next round of realignment. I wonder if Texas secretly blocked UH from the Big 12 because they feared what Herman could do if Houston had power conference resources? It would be ironic if the Big 12 is left out of the playoffs this season for the second time in three years, and then they decide to give UH membership after all because Herman is no longer on Cullen and thus UH isn’t perceived as a threat. With the soap operas that are both UT and in the Big 12, nothing would surprise me any more.

Houston Cougars football coach candidate list

via USA TODAY Sports
via USA TODAY Sports

Tom Herman is gone to Austin and the Houston Cougars are now on the market for a new head coach. I’ll have more thoughts recapping the Herman era in the coming days, for now, here’s a list of potential replacements to take over the Coogs’ head coaching position. Some of these names have been rumored in the media, some will be pure speculation on my part, and the list is by no means comprehensive but I’ll try to keep it updated as much as possible… so keep checking back. Also, the list is in no particular order.

Updates – Added three more potential candidates at the bottom. Also, a few people expressed surprise there are some current P5 coaches listed. These coaches are all rumored to be in the mix for the UH opening by respectable journalists. All are coaching at lower-tiered P5 programs and may be sick of not being able to be the big dog in the conference. The Houston opening is better than about half of the Power Five. This is not a discussion about money, but in case you care: Of the still employed coaches, only the recently added Dan Mullen made more money last year than Tom Herman.

Mike Leach – Head Coach of Washington State – Leach is 55 but has been a head coach since 2000. Leach is one of the most innovative offensive minds in college football being the prime inventor, with Hal Mumme, of the spread/air raid offense. Leach has deep Texas roots coaching at Texas Tech from 2000-09 and going 84-43. Leach has been at Washington State since 2012 and has turned around one of the worst FBS programs in the country to be 8-4 this year and 9-4 last season. The Cougars from the northwest were a loss to Washington away from going to the Pac 12 title game this season. The Pirate has never won a division title but would be a strong hire for the Coogs if he got bored of the Palouse. Leach would certainly be one of the most entertaining hires Houston could make and would crank things up to eleven on offense.

Dana Holgorsen – Head Coach of West Virginia – Holgorsen is only 45 years old and is part of the Mike Leach coaching tree. He was also Houston’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 2008-09. Holgorsen mentored a young Case Keenum before moving on to the same position at Oklahoma State and on to become West Virginia’s head coach in 2011. Holgorsen hasn’t won too much at West Virginia but has guided the Mountaineers to an impressive 2016 season. He’d bring a high octane offense and would be likely to keep the Coogs on pace for more 10+ win seasons. Holgorsen is reportedly fond of the city of Houston and it would be interesting to see what he could do with the talent in the H.

Les Miles – Former LSU head coach – No seriously, Miles is a bit old at 63 but had been a head coach since 2001. Miles went 28-21 at Oklahoma State before getting hired to coach at LSU in 2005. Miles went 114-34 at LSU in 11 1/4 seasons before wearing out his welcome. Miles guided LSU to two SEC titles and two national title game appearances, winning the 2007 BCS national title. Miles has guided his teams to a bowl game every season since 2002. In spite of his age, if Miles can hire a better offensive coordinator than Cam Cameron, he may be able to keep the Coogs recent successes going. UH could do a lot worse than going to a bowl every season and Miles is a great recruiter and motivator. He’d need a solid X & O’s assistant coach under him, though.

Art Briles – Disgraced and Humiliated – Don’t you put that evil on me Ricky Bobby! Briles was the head coach at UH from 2003-07 going 34-28 in the process and turned around the once dormant Houston program, winning the 2006 conference title. Briles did an even better coaching job turning the Baylor Bears into one of the best programs in college football, going 65-37 from 2008-2015 and winning two conference titles in the process. The Bears were as dreadful (maybe even worse) as Kansas is right now before Briles arrived. From a pure football perspective, Briles is the best coach available. That being said, Briles was fired in the midst of the worst scandal since Penn State and hasn’t shown any true remorse for his lack of institutional control of the football program. Briles never apologized until stories started leaking out that he wanted to coach again. Expect many thinly-veiled PR fluff stories in the next few weeks how “changed” he is and “regretful” he is about what happened at Baylor. If UH has any morals they should show we have some gotdamn self-respect and stay the hell away from Art Briles. Expect a flood of season ticket cancellations if Briles is hired.

Todd Orlando – Houston Defensive Coordinator – Orlando has done a great job as Houston’s defensive coordinator these past two seasons. He also served as dc at Utah State, FIU, and UConn before Houston. He’d be a solid and safe hire and, in the few times I’ve seen him speak, seems like he has head coach written all over him. Orlando might not get the same level of headlines that Herman got, but he’d be able to keep the Coog train rolling. And don’t be scared about hiring from within…. as long as we don’t promote the special teams coach.

Major Applewhite – Houston Offensive Coordinator – The 38-year-old has done a respectable job as Houston’s OC, even though depth issues along the o-line have hurt the Coogs’ offense this year. Applewhite was previously co-OC at Texas from 2011-13 and was OC at Alabama and Rice in previous years. Applewhite was one of the rising coaching prospects in the industry until he had “an inappropriate relationship with a student at the 2009 Fiesta Bowl” which is a way of saying he cheated on his wife with a UT athletic trainer. Applewhite might do a decent job as head coach, but he does come with a bit of baggage, albeit far less than Briles: One mistake seven years ago is slightly different than multiple years of distasteful behavior.

Joe Moglia – Coastal Carolina head coach – Wildcard! Moglia was Chairman and CEO of TD Ameritrade where he made millions on Wall Street. Moglia then turned in his P&L statements for a headset and got hired as a head coach of the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. Using the same skills he used to use to motivate as a CEO, Moglia has gone 50-15 as the head man in Conway, South Carolina. Now, why would the Coogs be interested in the 67-year-old coach of an FCS program? Moglia was originally hired by current Houston athletic director Hunter Yurachek. If Moglia was a decade younger he’d likely get more consideration for Houston top job, but he may at least be able to convince his old boss for at least a courtesy interview.

Sonny Dykes – Cal head coach – A Mike Leach disciple, he’ll probably push hard for the UH job, but he’s never won anything. Dykes went 22-15 at Louisiana Tech and has gone 18-30 at Berkeley. Reportedly contacted about Houston’s opening back in 2012, he’d be a desperate hire for the Coogs in 2016.

Lane Kiffin – Alabama offensive coordinator – The controversial and polarizing Kiffin is still only 41 years old. Currently serving as Alabama’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Kiffin went 28-15 as the head coach at USC and a respectable 7-6 in one season at Tennessee. Kiffin also coached 20 games with the Oakland Raiders nearly a decade ago. Kiffin would keep the media interested in Cullen Boulevard and would bring some innovative offenses and strong recruiting. He’s more likely to end up as LSU’s offensive coordinator, but may soon be a head coach again.

Brent Venables – Clemson DC and LB coach – The 45-year-old Venables has been a top defensive coordinator and linebackers coach since 1999(!). He currently coaches at Clemson and was at Oklahoma from 1999-2011. Venables is one of the major reasons why the Tigers have been dominant the past few seasons. Clemson coordinator Chad Morris has done an excellent job at SMU the past two seasons and it’s only a matter of time before Venables gets hired to take over a program as HC. He’d be another Herman-like hire: A big time P5 coordinator getting his first HC gig.

Sonny Cumbie – TCU co-OC and QB coach – The 35-year-old Cumbie was a quarterback under Mike Leach from 2000-04 and is a fast rising star in the coaching ranks. Cumbie was co-OC at Tech in 2013 and has been co-OC and quarterbacks coach at TCU since 2014. Would be a decent hire, but more of a gamble on a very young coaching prospect who doesn’t have a ton of experience as a coordinator. Expect him to be a head coach somewhere soon, most likely a G5 program.

Doug Meacham – TCU co-OC / iWR – The 51-year-old Meacham has been TCU’s co-offensive coordinator since 2014 and was Houston’s coordinator in 2013. He previously cut his teeth as an assistant at Oklahoma State from 2005-2012. This would be an average hire: Not great, but not awful.

Joe Moorhead – Penn State OC & QB coach – Moorhead has done a respectable job as Penn State’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach but has only been in Happy Valley for one season. Before that, Moorhead went 38-13 as FCS Fordham’s head coach. He’s mostly an east coast guy so he’d probably be more in-line for a job for a program out on that side of the country.

Dino Babers – Syracuse head coach – The Art Briles prodigy would be an interesting hire for Houston since Babers spent 2008-11 as an assistant in Waco. Babers went 19-7 at Eastern Illinois coaching Jimmy Garoppolo in the process. He then went 18-9 at Bowling Green before taking over the Syracuse job a year ago. He’s only gone 4-7 with the Orange this season but the team was in the dumps when he got there and managed a solid upset of #17 Virginia Tech this season. He’d have to think Syracuse is hopeless to leave so quick for a G5 program.

Lincoln Riley – Oklahoma OC/QB coach – If you can’t beat the Third Ward D, might as well join them? Riley is only 33 years old and might not have the experience the Coogs would need to take over the program. He’s been at Oklahoma for two seasons, was at East Carolina from 2010-14. Would be more a hire based on potential than anything.

Philip Montgomery – Tulsa head coach – Montgomery was Houston’s coordinator under Art Briles from 2005-07 and was an assistant at UH for two seasons before that. Montgomery followed Briles to Waco and was Baylor’s coordinator from 2008-14, coaching RG3 to the Heisman, before taking over the head coaching job at Tulsa. Not sure why he’d make a lateral move to Houston but expect his name to be rumored to be in the mix. I could see him taking over at Baylor before moving back to Houston. He’s done a decent job turning around the Golden Hurricanes, though, winning nine games this season and nearly beating the Coogs.

Tim Drevno – Michigan OC/OL – Drevno has done an excellent job as Jim Harbaugh’s offensive coordinator the past two years up in Ann Arbor. Drevno was also an assistant under Harbaugh with the 49ers from 2011-13, at Stanford from 2007-10, and at San Diego from 2003-06. He’ll likely be a head coach somewhere in the next few seasons.

Greg Schiano – Ohio State DC & AHC – The last Ohio State coordinator the Coogs hired did a pretty decent job on Cullen, why not duplicate that success? Schiano has only been at Ohio State for one season but previously turned around the atrocious Rutgers Scarlet Knights from 2001-11, making them relevant enough to eventually become a Big Ten team. Schiano was only 68-67 up in New Jersey but Rutgers was considered one of the worst programs in the history of college football. Schiano oddly left for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was an 11-21 disaster, but will likely get another head coaching job soon in college football. Before Rutgers, Schiano was DC at Miami for two seasons under Butch Davis and took over Rutgers the year Miami dominated college football and won the national title. He’s only 50 years old and will still have some good years left in him.

Gene Chizik – North Carolina DC – Coach Chizik went 5-19 at Iowa State before somehow landing the Auburn head coaching job, where he went 33-19. Chizik won the 2010 national title thanks to Cam Newton and was fired just two years later after going 3-9. Not sure if he is even a good head coach, but the 54-year-old might be a decent hire for a lower level G5 program.

Randy Shannon – Florida co-DC & LB – The 50-year-old Shannon has spent nearly his entire career in the state of Florida, serving as an assistant for the Miami Hurricanes from 1991-97 and as defensive coordinator from 2001-06 before taking over as head coach of The U from 2007-10. His Hurricane teams struggled on offense and he was fired after going 28-22. Shannon resurfaced at TCU as linebackers coach, then at Arkansas for two seasons in the same position, and is now back in the state of Florida running defense for the Gators. Might not be a good fit for Houston due to his weak ties in the state of Texas, but will likely get another shot at being a head coach one day.

Charlie Strong – Former Texas HC – Strong was just fired as the Texas head coach to make room for Tom Herman. There are some people who may link him to the Houston job, but I doubt the boosters would make the move to hire him. Regardless of how poorly he was treated in Austin, I see coach Strong taking a year off and enjoying that fat $11+ million buyout before taking another job.

Dan Mullen – Mississippi State head coach – Coach Mullen was the original Tom Herman and served as Urban Meyer’s offensive coordinator at Florida, most notably turning Tim Tebow into a legend. Mullen also served under or with Meyer as an assistant at Utah, Bowling Green, and Notre Dame. Mullen hasn’t won a whole lot with the Bulldogs, though he mentored Dak Prescott into an NFL starting quarterback and has gone 59-42 since arriving in Starkville in 2009. Perhaps he’s sick of being a lower-level SEC program and wants a new challenge? Either way, he’d be a respectable hire for the Coogs.

Jason Phillips – Kansas WR coach – The UH alumnus and former co-offensive coordinator from 2008-11, Phillips was passed over for the Coogs’ top job in 2012 for Tony Levine. For some reason, Phillips didn’t join the Sumlin staff in College Station and ended up at SMU before landing in Kansas as a position coach. Some UH fans might mention him as a candidate but I doubt it’ll happen. We can do a bit better.


How Tom Herman is destabilizing football in the state of Texas to Houston’s benefit

The Houston Cougars put the beatdown on the #3 ranked Louisville Cardinals last Thursday and now the “Herman to X” rumor mill is back in full swing and about to get completely wild. Coog fans need to sit back, grab a Brew of H, and watch the chess grandmaster Herman work.

Charlie Strong just lost to Kansas and likely cemented his fate. Kevin Sumlin may soon see the door as well. Kingsbury is possibly out, Waco has an opening, and LSU may or may not decide to retain Coach O. All of these schools are full of completely crazy, arrogant, rich boosters who’ve never been told no in their lives and have nothing better to than to undermine the stability of their football programs and put pressure on their athletic directors to hire Tom Herman. Nevermind that Willie Taggart would be just as good of a hire and is a Jim Harbaugh disciple, every booster has a hard-on for Herman.

The most despicable treatment of a coach is what’s been happening in Austin since 2014. After hiring the first African-American coach in their school’s history, brash and insolent UT booster Red McCombs said Charlie Strong would make a Great position coach, maybe a coordinator” . This is the same McCombs who bought the Minnesota Vikings in 1998, fired an African-American coach who had gone to the playoffs eight times in ten seasons and replaced him with a white position coach who managed one playoff appearance in five seasons with Randy Moss and Dante Culpepper in their primes. Charlie Strong had just come off two national championships as a coordinator under Urban Meyer at Florida and then guided Louisville to 37 wins in four years, with only 3 losses in his final two seasons, and coached Teddy Bridgewater to get drafted in the NFL. Apparently that wasn’t good enough for the Horns but Herman, with a similar resume, is. The haughty boosters like McCombs have been leaking stories to the media for the past three seasons and they’ve been shamelessly pining for Tom Herman, completely undermining their current team and coach in the process. No wonder they just got beat by Kansas. Will UT continue to recruit well in the future in spite of the instability? Of course. But if you think the families of many young African-American recruits aren’t watching Strong get sandbagged and thinking twice about sending their kids to school in one of the most segregated cities in the state then you probably don’t think Colonel Reb hurt Ole Miss in recruiting for decades. If Herman wants to step into that mess then good luck.

The rumors are now that UT’s contemptuous boosters are pressuring the school to hire Herman before A&M makes the move first. A&M is likely feeling some of the same pressure from their boosters, and I don’t doubt Tech, Baylor, and LSU are all in the same boat. A lot of Houston fans think that all of this talk has been a distraction for the Coogs, but it sure wasn’t against Louisville. If Herman is smart he’s staying mum to get a fat raise from UH, but also to give UT and A&M the false hope that he’s interested in leaving Houston. When Texas fires Strong, and should Sumlin, Orgeron, and Kingsbury be out the door as well, anyone less than Herman taking over their programs will be seen as a major letdown… save for Nick Saban getting bored of Tuscaloosa and heading west. Herman being quiet on his plans seems to be destabilizing those other programs and now is the perfect time for the Coogs to really pounce and takeover the state. Never telegraph your punch. Keep quiet and keep your cards close to the vest.

Of course, there’s a chance Herman is like every other coach who wants to coach at a blue blood program, but there’s also a huge possibility Herman really does want to build a wall around the city of Houston and try to turn the Coogs into the new 1980’s Miami Hurricanes. With TCU being seemingly the only stable P5 program in the region other than the Oklahoma schools, now is the perfect time for Herman to stay at Houston and push the Coogs program to the next level. Ed Oliver, Colin Wilder, and D’Eriq King are all true freshmen and will be even better as sophomores next fall. King, Kyle Allen, Kyle Postma, and Bowman Sells are all back on Cullen Blvd. next fall and will be battling to be the next legendary Cougar quarterback once Greg Ward Jr. graduates. The Coog program doesn’t need rebuilding like those other schools that have openings. Just imagine Herman with another year of recruiting under his belt and what the true freshman of 2017 will do on the field. I’ll say it again: Ed Oliver is not an outlier, he’s the beginning of a flood of four and five stars to UH.

One of the benefits of coaching at Houston is, as UH Hall of Fame coach Bill Yeoman always said, “You can swing a dead cat by its tail in Houston and hit 10 Division I football players.” Herman and his staff have the benefit of being the hip, up-and-coming football program in the region and every top recruit in the Houston area and in the Gulf Coast region is keeping their eye on the Coogs. Herman and staff can do all of their recruiting within 100 square miles of Houston and still be home for dinner, as Herman has mentioned several times. Herman has also mentioned how he’s moved his family a lot already over the years and, being that Tom and his wife Michelle have three young children, he would hate to uproot his family to a new town and put his kids in a new school. There also really isn’t another program in the region that has the stability of UH. Why would a high school player want to go to Waco, Austin, College Station, or Baton Rouge right now with all of the lack of stability in their coaching staffs? Stay home, play in front of your friends and family, and win some big-time football games even as a G5. The other huge benefit is Houston is in the prime position to be the top transfer destination to all of the kids from Houston who want to transfer back closer to home. If a kid from Katy heads to Oregon and gets homesick, why not come back and play at UH and be close to mom and dad?

If Tom Herman is that good of a coach then there will be plenty of blue-blood openings for him in the future should he be so inclined. There will always be impatient ADs and boosters. The Coogs are in the perfect position to ride the hot hand of a new quarterback in 2017 and for Oliver and the Third Ward D to shutdown opponents like they did Louisville last week. The Coogs could run the table in 2017 and sneak into the playoffs. If they do, Herman will be considered an absolute legend in college football, especially if they can pull off an upset or two. If he goes to Austin and goes 6-6 once or twice while taking the time to rebuild the program, fans will be calling for his head. Why deal with that? Everyone expects Herman to leave which is why I’m not convinced he will. To really be a legend you have to go against the grain, to march to a different beat, to see things no one else sees. If everyone agrees with you, you’re not a visionary you’re just a follower. Nick Saban can win a lot of national titles at Alabama but it would’ve been more impressive if he would’ve taken a program with less history and made them a power, like a Kentucky or Iowa State. Most people have to think you’re crazy to be a visionary and the thought of Tom Herman building the Coogs into the new Miami is crazy to most people which is why it may just happen. Either way, I’m just thankful our program is good enough for people to think our coach is even worthy of poaching. Happy Thanksgiving!