SIAP: CBS Poll of Underrated and Overrated Coaches

Submitted by FauxMo on August 19th, 2018 at 2:22 PM

A pretty interesting anonymous poll of current FBS coaches about which of their peers are most over- and underrated. Two B1G coaches are in the top four "Most Overrated" - James Franklin and Kirk Ferentz - and this quote on Lane Kiffen (also in the top four most overrated) alone makes the article worthwhile:

"I'm probably a little jealous [of Lane Kiffin]. If you're born on third base, that's great, but don't think you hit a triple."


Perkis-Size Me

August 19th, 2018 at 3:50 PM ^

One thing is for sure, it will be very interesting to see how his team performs this year now that the man who literally saved his job is gone. Along with probably the best running back in the game since AP. 

I don’t think they’ll have too much drop off, as Franklin isn’t going to go away from what’s worked the last two years.  But Franklin has never been known for making great in-game decisions. 


August 19th, 2018 at 5:28 PM ^

He reminds me of the most recent Last Chance U coach. Can't coach a lick but talks a big game enough to recruit well. PSU has enough money to hire him top Xs and Os help and that's enough to be successful most years. Still, not hard to see him squander talent in the years he doesn't have a good OC and DC working for him. 

blue in dc

August 19th, 2018 at 3:44 PM ^

There was a comment about Harbaugh though 

‘Mark Dantonio [is underrated]. He gets no respect because he isn't flashy and in the same state with a flashy guy that is unproven and hasn't won a big game yet."

it amuses me when people speak of Harbsugh’s three years at Michigan as if that is his entire career.  He proved himself at Stanford.   He proved himself at San Fransisco.   And he will prove himself at Michigan too.




August 20th, 2018 at 9:54 AM ^

Yeah. One thing I think is silly is how you can beat a team that is ranked in a big game, then if that team tanks the victory no longer counts. 


I honestly think that in college football things like the beat down we gave Northwestern are more likely to tank a season than a same loss in the NFL. 

Oh well. It is what it is. I don't care. I'm happy with Harbaugh, happier when I hear him talking with his Dad on the 'attack each day' podcast that we have a guy for the job who will make us better without brining us shame. 


August 19th, 2018 at 2:35 PM ^

I agree with Franklin. Before Moorehead, Franklin went 7-6 2 years in a row. Then with Moorehead, they went 11-3 and 11-2. You have to think that that is directly correlated in some way, shape, or form. With that being said, Franklin is definitely a good recruiter. I am curious though about how Penn St will perform this year given the departure of Moorehead, Barkely, Gesicki, Hamilton, and all those medical retires. Apparently Penn St is planning on basically just using Moorehead's playbook under a different OC so we'll see how that goes


August 19th, 2018 at 2:39 PM ^

Not sure how Kirk Ferentz is considered overrated. Has he ever had a top 10 rated class? Unless they think he should do better at Iowa. I guess I'm not as down on Franklin as everyone else. I think he did and does a pretty good job. He recruits like a mother, and they win. Anonymous polls are always sketchy to me. 


August 19th, 2018 at 2:41 PM ^

Yeah, he didn't look overrated when we went on the road there at 9-0 and lost to a crap Iowa team when we were in the top 5.

And yeah, Franklin is one of those guys that people here say is "just lucky", year in, year out. Sooner or later you have to look at results on the field and figure out that maybe it isn't just "luck".


August 19th, 2018 at 3:47 PM ^

Who (before you) used the word "stellar"?

I'm not putting James Franklin at Urban Meyer levels.  But that 60-32 breaks down to:

1.  24-15 at Vanderbilt.  61.5% win percentage.  He beat all of UGA, Florida and Tennessee in 2013.  Yes, those teams were down a bit - but still.  Who would have predicted that, plus an aggregate 24 wins, in December 2010 (when Franklin took the job)?

2.  36-17 at Penn State.  67.9% win percentage.  In comparison, JoePa teams won at a 69.3% clip (163-72) in the 1993-2011 (B1G) era.   Franklin's percentage is just below that.  And it's not unfair to point out that Franklin was handicapped a bit (because of JoePa) at the beginning of his PSU tenure.

Franklin has a good resume.  No, it's not Urban Meyer's resume.  But it's good.


August 19th, 2018 at 4:40 PM ^

The definition of "stellar" (the poster's word, not mine) is "exceptionally good."

There are about 3 coaches w/ an unquestionably "exceptionally good" resume in college football.  Meyer, Saban, Sweeney. 

That's why I mentioned Meyer.  Of course Franklin's resume isn't exceptionally (a very difficult goalpost to hit) good.  It is good though.


August 19th, 2018 at 6:44 PM ^

He won at fucking Vanderbilt!!! Vanderbilt!!! And I'm pretty sure the sanctions weren't over at Penn State when he got there from a recruiting standpoint.

Jesus Christ, context fucking matters.

Jim Harbaugh is 57-32 at Stanford and Michigan and less conference titles. I guess Franklin is better than him. 

One of the dumbest comments on this board in a long, long time.


August 19th, 2018 at 2:40 PM ^

Have to agree with thoughts on Taggert. Not sure I would say over rated but jury still out on him and not sure he has done enough to get the FSU job 

Newton Gimmick

August 19th, 2018 at 2:47 PM ^

These were interesting.  A knock on Harbaugh at the bottom.

  • "If you had the No. 1 recruiting class in the country every year [you'd win like Nick Saban]. He shows up at every single game with a better roster than the teams he 's playing. … If you count cheating and getting the best players in the country as part of running a program, he's the best in the country. It's like saying an NFL coach is the best coach in the league if he gets 25 first-round picks every year."
  • "I like Urban [Meyer], but there have been some characters that played for him that I thought should have not allowed."
  • "Mark Dantonio [is underrated]. He gets no respect because he isn't flashy and in the same state with a flashy guy that is unproven and hasn't won a big game yet."


August 19th, 2018 at 8:39 PM ^

This is my question, as well.  He does nothing to garner attention other than answer questions at press conferences (he's supposed to), do interviews when requested (he's supposed to), and defend his football programs, players, and coaches when others pick on them (he's supposed to).

Where's the flash?


August 19th, 2018 at 2:47 PM ^

These anonymous lists are trash, if you wont put your name next to it don't say it. I expect PSU to take a step back this year but as of now calling Franklin overrated with back to back 11 win seasons and the way he is recruiting seems pathetic.


August 19th, 2018 at 2:51 PM ^

I imagine there are a number of coaches that don't like Franklin.  He does exude that personality.

But "disliked" isn't "overrated." 

Harbaugh was #1 "overrated" on this list last year, FWIW --- and I tended to think that was the same sort of dynamic.  He wasn't "overrated".  That's crazy talk.  But he was "disliked" (by some).

Also, Nick Saban was #2 on this list last year!  Nick Saban!  Big Bert was probably one of the people who voted for Saban.  He must have thought Saban was overrated for beating Arkansas 47-3 every year.

Anyway, I don't think I'm a homer in saying that Franklin has put together a pretty good resume over the last 10 years (Vandy + PSU).


August 19th, 2018 at 4:22 PM ^

He did coach in the NFL and didn’t do so hot.


also I wouldn’t necessarily call the nfl a level playing field for coaches. They are still somewhat at the mercy of the teams front office and there are some teams that have shitty front offices. So maybe access to talent is a level field in the nfl, but that’s not the coaches job usually.


August 19th, 2018 at 9:36 PM ^

Nah you're not a homer on that one. I held off giving Franklin credit as long as I could because the fist few years it didn't seem like it was gonna work out. Some will say he got lucky hiring Moorehead but they can say the same about us and Don Brown (and it's hard to argue too hard against it). Fact is the last 2 teams were legit, if he falters this year hater fan bases will be give him shit but he has produced enough that he can take his time and keep building. If he keeps recruiting like he is he will not be going anywhere, and PSU is going to be a really tough out for a while. 

I will say I wish you guys hated MSU and OSU as much as you hate us, shit gets tiring when every good team in the conference is either an official rival or hates you as much as one.  


August 19th, 2018 at 9:39 PM ^

You are probably right but it just seems like those coaches have ulterior motives when they do this. I think it's all about recruiting, last year Harbaugh was still recruiting at an elite level, this year he is not so now he is not a threat and gets left off the list. 

Hold This L

August 19th, 2018 at 3:24 PM ^

Glad to see Pat Fitzgerald get some love. Also glad to see Franklin and Ferentz on here. When MSU barely reaches a bowl game this year and Harbaugh smokes D'antoni, we'll see his name get a few more votes, every year. Narduzzi was THE GUY behind the wheel. They were a very fortunate team last year, won't happen again. 

Hold This L

August 19th, 2018 at 5:53 PM ^

It makes the coordinators good coaches. It doesn’t make the HC a good coach in his own right. If a coach can have turnover at other coaching positions and still win then he’s shown that he has a knowledge for the game. When a head coach loses an assistant coach or two and the team struggles, that shows that his football IQ isn’t as high as his own coordinators. In three years since narduzzi, the defense hasn’t been the same. They got to the big ten championship on a fumbled punt and last second field goal and faced a pretty overrated Iowa team. The next year they went 3-9. Last year they were fortunate to face a couple tough teams in rain and had a bowl game against a team missing several key players. When narduzzi was the DC they were in every game and beat plenty of elite teams. 


August 19th, 2018 at 3:24 PM ^

I love the quotes in  the article.  There seems to be a lot of emphasis on whether or not the coach "properly" earned their current positions.  Taggert and Franklin may have been in the right place at the right time.  I love the job Peterson, Whittingham, and Mullen have done (with lesser talent at earlier programs) and yet I don't hear their names that often (which may be a regional issue.)  Everyone loves Pat Fitzgerald.  I think Kirk Ferentz got a lot of credibility early on a Iowa when he had an offensive coordinator that would eventually win a Super Bowl.  It seems he as been treading water ever since (although I don't see how you let hime go if  you are Iowa.)

I like the article because it reminds me that it is easier to win when you have superior talent.  I think some have an issue either with play calling or personnel decisions which is also interesting.


August 19th, 2018 at 4:27 PM ^

Because his record against the two main rivals sucks doesn’t mean Harbaugh hasn’t won some big games here.

the bowl game against Florida.

2016 against Wisconsin, psu, and the game against northwestern was pretty meaningful at the time. In addition to a Colorado team that turned out to pretty good. Maybe these aren’t conference championship games or playoff games. But they were really good wins


August 19th, 2018 at 5:59 PM ^

You mean when PSU had 6 starters out on defense and multiple back up LB's on top of that? They were a terrible team at that point in the season. Offense hadn't started to click yet.

In general, head coaches get too much credit/blame at times. Harbaugh was successful his first 2 years cause he inherited a ton of talent from Hoke. He struggled last year cause he lost all of those players and the QB situation was a mess. Got too much praise the first 2 years and too much criticism last year.

Franklin struggled his first 2 years cause his team stunk and his QB was Hackenberg. They were young and had terrible depth. He's recruited well and eventually things started to get better. Giving all the credit to Moorhead is just lazy thinking and people trying to convince themselves that they won't sustain success.


August 19th, 2018 at 9:21 PM ^

Why is it ok to mention that psu was missing key players when Michigan beat them, but the same argument can’t be made for Michigan missing their qb in key games last year? 

I don’t like making excuses but people tend to forget that Michigan did suffer some key injuries last season.