There are 44 days till college football season and today we focus on one of the more troubled coaches in the SEC.
Kevin Sumlin started his career at Texas A&M with a bang. 2012 was his and Johnny Football‘s first year in College Station. The Aggies went 11-2, upset Alabama, and had the first freshman to ever win the Heisman Trophy playing quarterback.
And that leads us to no. 44 on the Southbound and Down College Football Countdown.
Kevin Sumlin has a 44-21 record in his five years at Texas A&M
Sumlin is 79-38 overall in his career. After four years at Houston, he is now entering his sixth year at Texas A&M and nothing has really improved. They went 9-4 in Manziel’s sophomore season in 2013, and now they’re coming off three consecutive 8-5 seasons.
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If you’re thinking to yourself 11-2, 9-4, 8-5, 8-5, 8-5, that’s pretty good. You’re right. He’s averaging just under 9 wins per season. And his .677 winning percentage trails only Nick Saban and Jim McElwain for the best winning percentage among SEC coaches at their current school. But it’s the way it’s happened.
Texas A&M has started 5-0 in each of the last three seasons, and in 2016 they started 6-0. And since they’ve gone 8-5 three years in a row, that means they’ve lost five of their final eight games three years in a row. And last year they lost five of their final seven games.
Fans in the SEC have gotten impatient. They’ve forgotten what mediocrity truly is.
Les Miles averaged 9.5 wins and won two SEC titles in his 12 years at LSU, but his last SEC title came in 2011, and they didn’t even let him finish the 2016 season.
Mark Richt averaged 9.7 wins in his 15 years at Georgia. After winning two SEC titles in his first five years in Athens, Richt failed to bring home the hardware in his final 10 seasons.
Kevin Sumlin has averaged 8.8 in his five years at Texas A&M, but now his seat is as hot as anyone in the SEC. If we see a fourth consecutive 8-5 season, that might be the end of the road for Sumlin.