News, Notes & Quotes - Nov. 14

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Monday November 14, 2016


- One FBS job was filled this weekend, but another opened, as the coaching carousel starts to get going.

Trent Miles was dismissed at Georgia State after a 2-8 start to this season, one year removed from the program’s first bowl game. This came right after Jeff Tedford was hired at Fresno State. (Monday afternoon update: FIU has hired Butch Davis)

There are currently five four open FBS head coaching jobs, and we’ve got two weeks left in the regular season. At this point, schools planning to make a change will likely wait until Thanksgiving weekend. There are a couple bigger jobs we’ll have to wait and see, like Texas and Oregon. Openings there would create a huge ripple effect across the country. And what will LSU do?

Reminder: There are always a few surprises in each coaching search season. Make sure you bookmark the Coaching Search Ticker.

- Hawaii head coach Nick Rolovich ordered his team’s benches removed from the sideline during Saturday’s loss to Boise State.

The Rainbow Warriors trailed 42-3 at the time in the third quarter and would go on to lose 52-16. Only a couple chairs remained.

“I was sick of them sitting down pouting,” Rolovich told CoachingSearch. Asked if he thought of it on the spot, Rolovich thinks he once did the same thing when he was the offensive coordinator at Hawaii from 2010-11. “I call it spontaneous creativity.”

Rolovich took over a 3-10 team and has them at 4-7 this year. Hawaii finishes with games at Fresno State and at home against UMass.

- Through 11 weeks, here are the teams with the biggest increase in scoring offense.

- Mark Helfrich was asked if he feels he has the support from AD Rob Mullens, who declined a media interview request.

Oregon is 3-7 after a 52-27 loss to Stanford, and the Ducks have lost seven of eight.

“Obviously, he’s the only one who can answer that, but I have total confidence in what we’re doing,” Helfrich said Sunday. “Obviously, the results, again, have not been what anybody wants, and I’m responsible for that, period. We didn’t play well enough in any phase yesterday and that’s my responsibility, but I believe 100 percent in what we’re doing.

“The guys have continued to fight, regardless of the situation. We had a great weekend from a recruiting standpoint, and that’s always one of those weird situations where you think the world is coming to an end, and then six guys are fired up about their opportunity. We will continue to fight and we will continue to do the right things, and it will turn.”

- The Notre Dame defense has improved dramatically in key stats under interim coordinator Greg Hudson.

The Irish were allowing 33.5 points per game when Brian VanGorder was dismissed. They’ve allowed 20.1 points per game in the six games since. ND started 1-3 and is now 4-6.

“First and foremost, a very detailed, organized plan, well-coached during the week of practice, a focus on the fundamentals, and in-game adjustments that have been followed through by the players," Brian Kelly said of the improvement. "So I think just a coordinated effort that has seen this defense get better and better.

“I think the utilization of some more of the freshmen that have really matured and have gotten better by obviously later in the season, they've gotten more and more playing time. But I think all of that has come together through really good preparation, great morale, and at the end of the day, kids executing the game plan.”

- Who do you think has the worst rushing defense in the country? Would you believe it’s Arkansas?

The Hogs are giving up 6.34 yards per rush this year, No. 128 nationally, after LSU ran for 390 yards on Saturday. And that includes Arkansas allowing 12 rushing yards to Florida last week. What happened in the 38-10 loss to LSU?

“Well, LSU had something to do with it,” Bielema said. “But on the same count, I think there was some in the first half they were running into the boundary and overloading us in there. We definitely have to look at there's something that we were vulnerable or weak at. We adjusted our front and then they made a couple nice real good stops obviously, but in the second half, then they were able to have some success and get around the edge.

“… We just do so much better defensively when we're coming downhill, playing aggressive and resetting the line of scrimmage. And at times we did that but when we didn't they gashed us.”

- Ezekiel Elliott scored the game-winning 32-yard TD run to beat the Steelers on Sunday, but it was all about the line. Just look at this photo.

- A long line of Florida players stayed on the field after they beat South Carolina in order to talk to and hug Will Muschamp.

This was a cool moment, as Muschamp recruited those players to Gainesville.

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.