Next up on our college football coaches tour is the ACC. They are the home of the defending national champion Florida State Seminoles, and they welcome newcomer Louisville, into the conference, while Maryland departs for the Big 10.
The ACC is has a plethora of talented coaches in the fold with varying years of experience. Frank Beamer is easily the longest tenured coach in the ACC and he will be looking to get back to the conference elite. For that to happen, Virginia Tech’s offense needs to play much better in 2014.
The ACC also has extremely young coaches like Dave Clawson and Dave Doeren. Both coaches had successful seasons in the MAC before jumping for greener pastures in the ACC. However, as Doeren found out last year, the road may be a little tougher in your first season.
Like every year, there are coaches on the hot seat. This year it gets no hotter than Virginia’s Mike London. After winning coach of the year in 2011, it’s time for London’s squad to improver their win total after a couple of sub par years.
We also have ACC coaches that built their program up through recruiting and technique. That award will go to David Cutcliffe and the job he has done at Duke. Can he bring the Blue Devils to back to back ACC title games?
If you missed it, here are the SEC coaching rankings for 2014.
Now let’s take a look at the ACC coaching rankings.
14. Dave Clawson- Wake Forest: (first year) After three winning seasons in five years at Bowling Green, Dave Clawson is taking his talent to the ACC with the Demon Deacons. Clawson slowly built Bowling Green into potential powerhouse and he’ll looking for the same success at Wake Forest. In his final season, Clawson was (10-4) and finished with a .500 record during his tenure.
13. Dave Doeren- North Carolina State: The Wolfpack were (3-9) in their first season under Dave Doeren. He would love to flip those numbers in 2014. He won 23 in two seasons at Northern Illinois so he is accustomed to winning. North Carolina State has an easy start to the season, but October is treacherous ground. Let’s see if he’s worth his money.
12. Mike London- Virginia: Mike London is entering his fifth season as the Cavs head coach. In 2011, he was the ACC coach of the year, but the program hasn’t come back from hard times. Last season, Virginia finished with a (2-10) record. He must turn it around immediately. London is (18-31) at Virginia.
11. Paul Chryst- Pittsburgh: The Pittsburgh Panthers should be in the running for the division crown. They don’t play Clemson or Florida State this season. Paul Chryst has to break in a new quarterback, and the offense needs to be more consistent. He has a (13-13) record in two seasons.
10. Steve Addazio- Boston College: If you like the running game and defense, then Steve Addazio is your man. He’s on pace to build this program in a tough fashion. They were the only team besides Auburn to put a scare into Florida State. Still he must find a replacement at the running back position in 2014.
9. Paul Johnson- Georgia Tech: is entering his seventh season as head coach and he’s had one losing season and one double digit winning season. Otherwise, Paul Johnson has been in the middle of the pack. He must guard against second half swoons that usually doom early season success. Georgia Tech is (1-5) in bowl games under Johnson.
8. Larry Fedora- North Carolina: In two seasons as North Carolina’s head coach, Larry Fedora has compiled a (15-10) record. Now we’re wondering if he can take the Tarheels to the next level. We will see a lot of new offensive pieces in 2014.
7. Scott Shafer- Syracuse: Syracuse is entering their second season in the ACC. It is also Scott Shafer’s second season as head coach. He guided the Orange to (7-6) season with a bowl win. The Orange will be vying for double digit wins this season. If Shafer can produce a couple upsets, it could be a huge season.
6. Al Golden- Miami Hurricanes: The Hurricanes’ coach is all in for 2014. Golden finally has the Miami program looking Golden for the future. In three seasons he’s continued to up his win total. Now Miami will be searching for that 10th win and beyond.
5. Frank Beamer- Virginia Tech: Frank Beamer is easily the most tenured coach in the ACC. Entering his 28th season as head coach, “Beamer Ball” has had its ups and downs after eight straight 10 win seasons. They fought through major injuries last year and now have to bring in a new signal caller, which might not be the worst thing to happen. It’s a new beginning for Va Tech.
4. Bobby Petrino:- Louisville comes highly recommended on the field, but his off field shenanigans have gotten him into trouble. The former Louisville coach is now back for his second stint. Petrino never won fewer than nine games in his four seasons and that included an (11-1) in 2004 and a (12-1) season in 2006. There’s a good chance Louisville will continue to roll in 2014.
3. Dabo Swinney -Clemson: When will Dabo Swinney get over the hump? He owes some payback to Florida State and South Carolina, while still facing off with Georgia. There’s no more Tahj Boyd, but Clemson should be set at quarterback. Swinney is working on three straight double digit win seasons and has a (51-23) record as head coach.
2. David Cutcliffe- Duke: In reality, he might be the best coach in college football. The way he has built this Duke program is incredible. It took him six years to finish with a winning record. It’s a big season for the Blue Devils. They want to build on the momentum of a 10 win season. David Cutcliffe is a quarterback guru.
1. Jimbo Fisher- Florida State: Even if you didn’t want to, Jimbo Fisher has to be the No.1 coach in the ACC. In four season’s as head coach, Fisher has garnered three 10 win seasons and a National title for the Seminoles. They come into 2014 as the No.1 team in the nation with the reigning Heisman trophy winner. Life is good down in Seminole country.