Monday, December 9, 2013
Kevin Sumlin doesn't fit McNair's wish list
By Tania Ganguli
When Texas A&M awarded coach Kevin Sumlin a handsome six-year extension worth $5 million a year, many thought that would be the end of any talk of his departure from the school.
Not so until he actually signs that extension.
He hasn't done that yet, or at least not as of late Sunday night, as NFL Network's Ian Rapoport first reported.
But does that mean the Texans are interested? It would be odd. Sumlin just doesn't fit the mold.
Houston Texans owner Bob McNair wants a coach with both head coaching experience and NFL experience (which is about the 8,395th time I've typed that sentence). Sumlin has been a head coach at the University of Houston and Texas A&M, but he doesn't have any NFL experience. All of his stops have been with college teams.
You don't have to look far to find examples of successful college coaches who didn't last in the NFL. Nick Saban, Steve Spurrier and Bobby Petrino are just a few who struggled as they transitioned to jobs that limited their power more than college jobs do.
There are some converse examples, like Jim Harbaugh who has succeeded on both levels, though Harbaugh did have NFL experience prior to becoming Stanford's head coach. And the jury is still out on Chip Kelly, who went from Oregon to the Philadelphia Eagles this season.
It took Pete Carroll a few tries to get the hang of things. His current NFL job with the Seattle Seahawks is going a lot better than his stints as the New York Jets and New England Patriots coach. Both teams fired him.
Who knows into which category Sumlin would fall, but when it comes to McNair's wish list, Sumlin lacks one key ingredient.