College Coaching Carousel Not Done Spinning Yet
You might think that with most of the major head coaching jobs filled, that most of the top names in college football will be staying put. Wisconsin is the biggest remaining opening right now, followed by Texas Tech and then maybe Temple. But recall that the NFL season ends three Sundays from now to be followed by a "Black Monday" where a number of coaches will be getting their pink slips. That could upset a number of apple carts in the NCAA all over again.
You can probably name a dozen NFL coaches on the hot seat right now. There's Andy Reid in Philadelphia, Norv Turner in San Diego, Romeo Crennel in Kansas City, Rex Ryan in New York, Ron Rivera in Carolina, Ken Whisenhunt in Arizona, Mike Mularkey in Jacksonville, Chan Gailey in Buffalo, Mike Munchak in Tennessee, Pat Shurmur in Cleveland, Jason Garrett in Dallas, and Lovie Smith. They won't all get fired, but it wouldn't take many pro jobs to come open before we see at least one college coach "called up" to a pro football job. Once that happens, the shuffling at the college level can start all over again.
For example, what if UCLA's Jim Mora is lured back to the NFL? There are a lot of college coaches who might consider Los Angeles a desirable location (especially in December). Nick Saban is sure to draw interest, though he might realize he's better off for now staying in college. There seems to be a lot of buzz about the potential of Oregon's Chip Kelly at the pro level. Speaking of Kelly's, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly will probably draw some interest, particularly if he manages to top Saban's Alabama team for the national championship. Stanford has a history of sending coaches to the NFL and David Shaw could be next. Bob Stoops has seem inclined to stay at Oklahoma when opportunities have come up in the past, but eventually he may want to give the NFL a go. There's even been some speculation about Michigan's Brady Hoke and NU's Bo Pelini as pro coaches. Someone could take a flyer on Les Miles. So there's a fairly long list of major college programs that might all of a sudden become vacant. It only takes one opening before we see a reshuffling of the college deck all over again.
For the next three weeks or so, things could remain calm on the college front. But come December 30th, things could start to change pretty dramatically.