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Dan Hawkins, it's (likely) been real

Updated: October 27, 2010, 4:43 PM ET
By Bruce Feldman

Every year, college coaching hot seats are a big topic; my colleague Ryan McGee already has written about it on his blog , and it's addressed almost every day in College Football Rumor Central.

So far this year, Tim Brewster and Todd Dodge have been sacked. By December, many more will follow. Here are the hottest seats in America.

1. Dan Hawkins
Colorado Buffaloes
It's Year 5. It's not going well. You recall some of the bluster. There was big talk going into the 2009 season, which the Buffs ended 3-9. The murky part of this: The administration above Hawkins (who's 19-37) is shaky, and he would be due a couple of million if he is fired, but can the school afford to keep him if he can't get this team to a bowl game and pick up some momentum? In a recent Denver Post poll, 87 percent voted that Hawkins should be fired now or right after the season. The Buffs have lost a couple of tough games in the past two weeks and could've been 5-2 but instead are 3-4 with a trip to Oklahoma this week. They also have to go to Lincoln, Neb., to close out the regular season. Short of an 8-4 regular season with wins at two ranked teams, it seems like a long shot that Hawkins will coach another season at CU.

2. Mike Locksley
New Mexico Lobos
In 2007, the Lobos were 9-4. That's not that long ago, but then-coach Rocky Long went 4-8 in 2008 and was replaced with Locksley, who has brought a staggering level of instability to this program both on and off the field.

The Lobos were 1-11 in 2009 and are 0-7 so far this season, ranking 117th in the nation on offense and 120th on defense. Pick an NCAA stat, and there's a very good chance UNM is ranked 100th or lower. Only in kickoff returns (29th) are the Lobos higher than 90th in any of the 17 categories. They are the only team to lose to in-state rival New Mexico State. The Lobos lost their first four games by 35 points or more. Three of their final five games are on the road, and one of the two remaining home games is against TCU.

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