3-point stance: Itchy trigger fingers

November, 29, 2011
11/29/11
5:00
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1. Athletic directors are itchier than ever to fire coaches. Three years is the new five. If an athletic director makes an unsuccessful hire, he usually gets to make one more. If that one fails, the athletic director isn’t long for the campus, either. That’s not the case at UCLA, where chancellor Gene Block said Monday that AD Dan Guerrero would hire a replacement for Rick Neuheisel. Guerrero hired Neuheisel and Karl Dorrell before him. In nine seasons, they went a collective 56-56.

2. Pac-12 schools have fired three coaches with a fourth, Paul Wulff at Washington State, awaiting word of his fate (I think Wulff has earned a fifth year). It would be easy to assume that the way that new commissioner Larry Scott is marketing football, that the standards to succeed are higher. But that’s not it. The league’s standards always have been above mediocre. There are three good teams in the Pac-12 (Oregon, Stanford, USC) and a lot that need to catch up.

3. Thanks to reader Matt Heyes for this note: in five seasons when Mark Richt played a quarterback starting for the first time, Georgia went 41-23 (.640), with one 10-win season. That would have been senior D.J. Shockley, who played regularly in previous years behind David Greene, leading the Dawgs to a 10-3 record and the SEC title. In the six seasons in which Richt has had a returning starter at quarterback, the Dawgs are 65-13 (.833) with one SEC title and four SEC East championships.

Ivan Maisel | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com

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