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Y11 Notes: SP+, Coaching Candidates
EMU was SP+'s #98 team in the country in the preseason, now at #107.
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Y11 Notes: Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022
SP+: EMU slides down
Despite a 2-1 record after a 9-point win at Arizona State, Bill Connelly’s SP+ ratings say that Eastern Michigan’s slid down nine spots from where the team entered this season. EMU was SP+’s 98th-ranked team heading into the 2022 season and now stands at 107 with gradual declines after each week.
SP+ doesn’t usually move teams up and down as emotionally as you or I might if we had to make a power rankings list. It’s a predictive measure that takes into account five main factors: efficiency, explosiveness, field position, finishing drives, and turnovers.
Thinking broadly about the season EMU’s had, remember that the Eastern Kentucky game was too close for comfort, the Louisiana game ended up being a tire fire in the second half, and EMU’s kicker made three field goals to beat Arizona State by 9. A 2-1 record looks good on its own, but the wins haven’t been dominant enough for the numbers to like EMU any more than it did last month.
All of the five points above are certainly points of emphasis with this team, but in Monday’s press conference, the very first thing Chris Creighton talked about was that his team didn’t win the turnover battle against ASU.
Since 2018 when EMU finished the season +10 in the turnover margin, EMU’s finished its seasons +4 in 2019, even in 2020, +3 last year, and is currently -5 just 25% into this season with eight turnovers and three takeaways. That’s not good.
If EMU can get into a groove of stealing the ball from their opponents and creating points off those opportunities, then EMU will start moving up on the list.
CFB: Potential candidates for potential jobs
Urban Meyer — Let’s get this name out of the way. While Urban Meyer has proven to be a grade-A scumbag as a functioning human being, he’s also a proven coach that brings in championships at the college level. If you’ve got a college program that doesn’t care about his personal baggage and is willing to emphasize that he’s the guy to bring School X to a national championship, then there’s a good chance Meyer’s going to take that phone call.
Nebraska definitely desperate enough, and there are mixed reports about whether or not Nebraska’s made any contact with the coach already, and what that phasing actually means. Meyer sure knows the Big Ten, which is currently played as a reason for Meyer to take the Nebraska job, but he also knows the Big Ten well enough to stay the hell out of Ohio State’s way.
Arizona State; time for a mental exercise. Think about the future of college football, the playoff, the conferences and all of its best schools. Amidst all the moves going on, where does Arizona State fit in college football’s world? Where does Arizona State stand in the Pac-12? Theoretically, Arizona (the state) pumps out enough high school talent, especially at QB, that should be benefiting the in-state colleges to new heights. Coming off a year where Arizona State out-recruited USC for California-bred talent, would Meyer be able to elevate ASU as a perennial top-10 team?
Scott Frost — It’d be an emotional rollercoaster for any school that has the cajones to hire Scott Frost this cycle after his tremendous demise at Nebraska.
Here’s a realistic and non-embarrassing route to continue his career, why not build another winner out of a G5 school?
If Ohio wastes away the season (we’re just talking here), I couldn’t imagine AD Julie Cromer would be able to let Tim Albin stick around for a third year. Ohio could bring in Frost, let him work the same magic he had at UCF while the larger conversation be about how he’d be the one to eventually succeed Frank Solich, who retired after 16 seasons with the Bobcats. And of course, both have, uh, Nebraska head coaching experience.
Hell, Bowling Green’s probably more ready to replace its head coach soon.
Sean Lewis — Kent State’s current head coach, 36, might finally be ready to make that leap to a Power 5 school. He did take Kent State to a MAC Championship but did so with a quarterback that he did not recruit.
Of the two openings right now, Arizona State’s the one I could see Lewis going to, but I wonder how much both sides could get out of that marriage. Has Lewis done enough to show that he’s a guy who could win 9-10 games a year in Tempe, Ariz.?
Lance Leipold — It’s wild to me that Lance Leipold is the hottest name on the coaching carousel. Leipold was obviously a great coach when he won six national championships at the Divison-III level. Now the former Buffalo coach is doing very good things with Kansas (of all teams!) in a very short amount of time.
It’s fun to say a lot of the chaotic choices to sign up for their own death as the next Nebraska coach, but I’d actually think very highly of Nebraska (Arizona State too, but) if they got to hire Leipold. This is a coach that doesn’t do the cult of personality thing, he just does a great job at sticking to the football thing and doing it well. It’s a crazy idea that’s worked for him at Wisconsin-Whitewater, Buffalo, and Kansas. If Nebraska landed him, it’d be because Leipold has an honest-to-goodness desire to be there. He wouldn’t be winning games at Kansas right now if he didn’t want to be there.
Herm Edwards — Welp. Here we are.
ESPN again? Before he was lured back into coaching for Arizona State, he was an NFL analyst for ESPN for nine years.
Retirement? Edwards is 68. When I’m 68, I won’t want to do any more heavy-lifting. Ideally I’d like to greet people at the front door of a grocery store for 12 hours a week and consider that enough for my work week. If I had Herm Edwards money in the bank, theoretically, I think I’d be able to swing it. That, or be a consultant.