How bad can one season possibly be that a head coach would be fired at the end of it?
It’s not nearly the ever-unknown riddle of ‘how many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie-pop’, but it’s pretty close. Luckily for us, but not for one man, the administration at Southern Miss has answered that questions for the nation.
The Golden Eagles athletic department has fired Ellis Johnson following one of the biggest one-year collapses in college football history.
Larry Fedora pulled off a miracle of sorts in 2011, helping to engineer one of the best seasons in the program’s history with a 12-win season and a Conference USA Championship Game-upset of previously BCS bowl bound Houston. After that game and the subsequent bowl season, both coaches left the conference; Houston’s Kevin Sumlin heading to Texas A&M and Fedora parlaying the big year into a big contract at an even bigger program, North Carolina.
Forced to rebuild, the program brought in Johnson, who’s team struggled with injuries and lost several close games, including an overtime defeat at the hands of Louisville.
When a newbie comes around and brings a 12-pack of beers to a tailgate, he is generally welcomed with open arms, as was the case with Fedora before he scurried on out of town.
The same, of course, cannot be said for a newbie who strolled onto the scene and brought a 12-pack of losses to the party, as was the case with Johnson before he was run out of town.
The Golden Eagles were the only team in the entire Football Bowl Subdivision to finish 0-12.
Johnson was hired on after spending more than a decade as a defensive coordinator in the SEC, and while this was his first attempt as a head coach, obviously he needed to get a hang of things a tad bit more quickly.
h/t SB Nation
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