Faculty soccer season is simply across the nook, which implies we’ll quickly get our first glimpses of some high head coaches at new colleges.
There are extraordinarily excessive expectations for these coaches at some high colleges. Which of those coaches has probably the most to show of their new place?
Let’s dive into it.
1. Brian Kelly – LSU
At a time when Notre Dame nonetheless had an opportunity to succeed in the school soccer playoffs, Brian Kelly shockingly left South Bend for SEC lure at LSU. Kelly, a Massachusetts native who has spent most of his teaching profession within the Midwest, was a specific cultural match at Baton Rouge, and it has actually been a technique of assimilating into the LSU household.
Kelly has received at the very least 10 video games in six of his final seven seasons at Notre Dame and is now inheriting an LSU program after back-to-back disappointing seasons following the magic nationwide championship run in 2019. Kelly has come shut however n ever received a nationwide title at Notre Dame, and expectations are at all times excessive on the subject of a program like LSU.
There’s stress to win instantly. But when there are early rising pains for Kelly in Baton Rouge, will the LSU group be affected person? Or will skepticism about Kelly’s place within the SEC creep in shortly? Kelly has confronted robust schedules as a freelancer at Notre Dame, however the SEC West juggernaut is a unique type of beast.
2. Lincoln Riley – USC
Lincoln Riley’s transfer from Oklahoma to USC was by far probably the most high-profile transfer on the teaching carousel. USC is hungry for nationwide relevance, and Riley is actually a coach who can elevate the Trojans — particularly with a transfer to the Large Ten on the horizon.
Riley was 55-10 and received 4 Large 12 titles whereas in Oklahoma and he introduced his star quarterback, Caleb Williams, with him to Los Angeles. With Williams and an array of different transfers within the fold, a fast turnaround is broadly anticipated for the Trojans.
With that degree of hype, nonetheless, it is easy to neglect that USC went 4-8 final fall. The expertise in assault additionally permits to look past the holes in protection. The transition from mediocrity to nationwide nominee might not occur as shortly as USC followers count on.
3. Marcus Freeman – Notre Dame
Notre Dame is without doubt one of the most coveted jobs in school soccer, however the college determined to advertise Marcus Freeman, a promising younger assistant on Brian Kelly’s workers, fairly than pursue an out of doors choice. Freeman rose by the teaching ranks and made a reputation for himself as a defensive coordinator in Cincinnati earlier than touchdown in South Bend. And now he received his first head teaching job on the age of 36. Is he prepared?
Freeman, one of many sport’s youngest head coaches, leads one of many nation’s most historic packages. He is received a hell of a basis, however can he raise the Irish? Kelly has taken Notre Dame to the precipice of a nationwide title on a number of events, however the Irish are nonetheless chasing their first title since 1988.
The Irish open the 2022 season at Ohio State in a major first take a look at for Notre Dame’s new regime underneath Freeman.
4. Mario Cristobal – Miami
Miami received 5 of its final six video games final season however nonetheless determined to fireside Manny Diaz after simply three seasons to be able to convey Mario Cristobal residence. Cristobal, a Miami alum, had a 35-13 report at Oregon. He has lengthy since confirmed himself to be a high-level and relentless recruiter.
Cristobal introduced a number of expertise to Eugene and he is off to an awesome begin in Miami now that he is again in his native South Florida. A hungry Miami fanbase sees Cristobal as a savior and believes the Hurricanes are lastly prepared to maneuver up the nationwide championship desk. It is perhaps sensible to pump the brakes on this.
The Hurricanes have expertise, together with promising quarterback Tyler Van Dyke, however Cristobal has work to do with this roster and the schedule is packed. Nonetheless, if this staff is not chasing an ACC Coastal title in Cristobal’s freshman 12 months, it will be a disappointment.
5. Billy Napier – Florida
Florida fell off a cliff in its last season underneath Dan Mullen. UF received 29 video games in Mullen’s first three seasons, however put up an embarrassing effort in 2021 as rival Georgia received a nationwide championship.
Within the aftermath, the Gators introduced in Billy Napier to place this system again in competition within the SEC East. Napier has coached on the Energy 5 degree, however solely as an assistant.
Can Napier’s success in Louisiana within the Solar Belt translate to the SEC? His groups at Lafayette had been disciplined and hard. You will not discover anybody who has used these phrases to explain the 2021 Gators. Nonetheless, this staff has loads of expertise and expertise. You have to suppose they’re motivated after what occurred in 2021, proper?
On high of that, Florida recruiting suffered underneath Mullen. Florida’s Class of 2023 is presently ranked No. 27 by Rivals. That will not be sufficient for Napier.
6. Brent Venables – Oklahoma
The Oklahoma fanbase appeared fairly busy with their contempt for Lincoln Riley fairly than turning the web page on the Brent Venables period at Norman. That is the primary head teaching job for Venables, the longtime defensive coordinator finest identified for profitable two nationwide titles at Clemson.
OU followers are hoping Venables will shortly present the school soccer world that the Sooners can be simply positive with out Riley. That is very true on protection, which is Venables’ specialty and was a constant weak spot for the Sooners underneath Riley. Profitable the Large 12 is the OU’s annual expectation, however Venables can be chargeable for overseeing this system’s transition to the SEC. If Venables cannot lead the Sooners to the highest of the Large 12, how will he fare within the SEC?
7. Dan Lanning – Oregon
After teaching probably the greatest defenses in school soccer historical past at Georgia, Dan Lanning now finds himself on the opposite facet of the nation teaching the Oregon Geese. It is the primary head teaching job for Lanning, 36, who coached defensive backs at Sam Houston State simply eight years in the past.
Lanning inherited a roster of Geese who must be able to compete for a Pac-12 championship, however the inexperience issue nonetheless looms. There’s additionally his determination to convey Bo Nix with him from the SEC to steer Oregon’s offense underneath coordinator Kenny Dillingham. Oregon is a program that has the sources and expertise to win immediately.
8. Sonny Dykes – TCU
Throughout his 21 seasons, Gary Patterson helped information TCU’s transition from Convention USA to Mountain West and into the Large 12. Alongside the way in which, TCU received a C-USA title, 4 Mountain West titles, a share of the Large 12 title, 17 bowl appearances, six high 10s and 11 seasons with double-digit wins.
It is a robust act to comply with for Sonny Dykes. The Texas native, most lately at SMU, had his eyes set on the job and TCU felt sturdy sufficient to rent Dykes whom they fired Patterson, whose statue stands exterior the stadium.
Dykes can coach the offense, however his SMU groups persistently light and his Cal groups had been poor defensively. The match for Dykes in Fort Value is sensible on many ranges, however there isn’t any historical past that he might end in a high 15 program.
9. Brent Pry – Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech is a proud program affected by mediocrity because the final years of the Frank Beamer period. Justin Fuente made the ACC title sport in his first season, however was 24-23 (17-15 ACC) mixed in his final 4 seasons at Blacksburg. Fuente’s recruitment has been lackluster, resulting in a drop in expertise on the roster.
It is Brent Pry’s job to get the Hokies again in competition for the ACC title. Pry, 52, had a stable run as a defensive coordinator at Penn State, however that is his first head teaching job. Pry might actually use an excellent freshman 12 months to instill confidence that he can get the Virginia Tech program again in the fitting route.
10. Tony Elliott – Virginia
Bronco Mendenhall introduced Virginia right into a continuously aggressive schedule, however determined to retire from teaching. This opened the door for Tony Elliott, who had the prospect to depart his snug perch at Clemson for his first job as a head coach. He selected Virginia.
There have been some questions on how Elliott led Clemson’s offense in 2021. In Virginia, he inherits one of many nation’s most underrated quarterbacks in Brennan Armstrong and loads of back-to-back manufacturing. receiver, however the offensive line is a serious query mark. On high of that, the Cavs protection was downright dangerous in 2021.