Are there any Big East coaches on the hot seat heading into the season?
My answer to that question is no, even though USF and Syracuse fans have sent questions my way about their respective coaches. The truth is that Big East fans usually have to worry more about their coaches leaving for other jobs than getting fired.
But hot seat talk is good for debate and offseason fodder. I understand why there may be some fan discontent with Skip Holtz over at USF and Doug Marrone at Syracuse coming off 5-7 seasons. But as I have answered on this blog, I don't think either are in imminent danger of losing their jobs.
However, I do believe these are critical seasons for both of them. Marrone has a couple years left on his contract, and there is no way he wants to go into a lame-duck season if it happens to be his first in the ACC. Holtz is heading into Year 3 and is highly regarded at the school and among his peers. Another losing season for both would probably get them onto the hot seat going into 2013. But for this year, I think it is too early.
Dennis Dodd over at CBSSports.com has a little different view. He has just unveiled his newest hot seat rankings for 2012.
Here is how he rated the six Big East coaches with at least one year experience. First-year coaches don't get rated. The ratings go from 0-5. A rating of 0 means oodles of job security; a rating of 5 means your pants are on fire.
Doug Marrone, Syracuse: 3.5. "On the bubble, feeling pressure."
Paul Pasqualoni, UConn: 2.5. "Safe, but you never know."
Skip Holtz, USF: 2.5. "Safe, but you never know."
Steve Addazio, Temple: 2.0. "Safe, but you never know."
Butch Jones, Cincinnati: 2.0. "Safe, but you never know."
Charlie Strong, Louisville: 1.0. "Very safe, change unlikely."
I only have a quibble with one rating. I have no idea how Butch Jones comes in at a 2.0. Yes, I know this designation is still "safe." But there is a caveat to it. You never know? Yes, we do know. Jones just won Big East coach of the year honors and went 10-3. He should be in the same category as Strong. I think they are the two safest coaches in the Big East, hands down.