Sunday, January 20, 2008

5 Worst SEC Coaching hires since 1990

Looking at the immediate success guys like Bruce Pearl and Andy Kennedy have had at UT and Ole Miss respectively, it's obvious what kind of effect hiring the right guy for the job can have. But what happens when the wrong guy is hired? Well, you end up on this list... that's what.

I may be missing someone here, but these are the 5 worst coaching hires I can think of since 1990. And, no, Florida fans, Ron Zook is not on this list. He had an average record in Gainesville and laid the foundation for your national championship with his recruiting. If there’s someone obvious that I’ve left off, email me at

5. Rod Dohower – Vanderbilt Football Coach, 1995-96

While no coach has won consistently at Vanderbilt in more than 7 decades, Dohower took the losing to a new low in his brief tenure in Nashville. In two seasons, he compiled a 4-18 (.182) overall record and a 1-15 (.063) record in conference. His only SEC win was over a 4-7 Kentucky team in early November 1995. Gerry Dinardo had the ‘Dores on the brink of a bowl game in 1994 winning 5 games and losing 2 others by less than a touchdown. Dohower was quickly showed the door in favor of Woody Widenhofer, who may not have won much, but he won more than Dohower did.

4. Mike Price – Alabama Football Coach, 12/18/2002 – 5/3/2003

Speaking of short tenures… Alabama’s hiring of Price was a bad on more than one level. Besides the fact that Price seemed to have an affinity for libations and strippers that look like Dee Snyder from Twisted Sister, Price’s hire represented the desperation Alabama has had trying to find someone to fill Bear Bryant’s shoes. He was warned about his antics immediately after he was hired, but chose not to heed those warnings. He wound up disgracing not only himself, but the University of Alabama.

3. Curley Hallman – LSU Football Coach, 1991-1994

Hallman’s record (16-28 overall, 10-21 SEC) is better than Dohower’s, but let’s face it… it’s a little bit easier to win at LSU than Vanderbilt. Hallman never had a winning record in 4 seasons in Baton Rouge and has the lowest winning % of any head coach there since Wayne Sutton coached 1 season back in 1917.

2. Ed Orgeron – Ole Miss Football Coach, 2005-2007

Wow… How did this one NOT go wrong? The master of the moral victory, Orgeron’s Rebels played a lot of teams close, but never could finish anyone off. Most of that stemmed from the fact that Orgeron not only had no head coaching experience, he had no coordinating experience either. Even though it was more than a decade ago, questions about his rough and tumble previous life lingered over his head from the day he stepped foot in Oxford. He won 3 SEC games in 3 seasons, but 0 in 2007. That, coupled with dubious play calling and late season disciplinary problems, led to his demise.

1. Jim Harrick – Georgia Basketball Coach, 1999-2003

Harrick actually compiled a winning record (66-53) in his tenure at Georgia, but he easily tops this list because of his off the court issues. A controversial hire from the beginning, Harrick had a track record of dishonest winning when he was hired, but the ‘Dawgs were willing to take a chance on him. And they paid the price. They ended up withdrawing from postseason play – including the SEC tournament – after the 2003 season, forfeiting 30 wins over the ’01-‘02/’02-’03 seasons, and losing 1 scholarship per season over the next 3 seasons.

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