August 29, 2009

Preseason head coach power rankings

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We continue our preseason power rankings at each position with the defensive ends.

You can check out our post-spring practice power rankings here. We will update the power rankings each week during the regular season and release the final rankings for the season after the BCS title game.

The rating of a player and coach can fluctuate each week during the season depending on how they fared the previous week, but the power rankings measure overall career performances as well as their most recent results.


1. Urban Meyer, Florida
After winning two national championships in the past three seasons, Meyer and his team are primed to win a third. Tom Osborne and Frank Leahy are the only coaches to win three titles in four years.

2. Pete Carroll, USC
The Trojans have finished in the top four of the polls for seven consecutive seasons, but they haven't played for the national championship since 2005, thanks to Pac-10 upsets.

3. Nick Saban, Alabama
He's building a powerhouse at Alabama, but Saban never has had consecutive 10-win seasons. Can that trend change after the Tide went 12-2 in 2008?

4. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma
BCS struggles aside, Stoops has led Oklahoma to seven top-10 finishes in the past nine seasons. He's the first Big 12 coach to win three consecutive conference titles.

5. Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech suddenly has become the ACC's model program, winning three conference titles in its five seasons in the league. The Hokies ended the ACC's eight-game BCS losing streak by beating Cincinnati in the Orange Bowl last season.

6. Mack Brown, Texas
The Longhorns have won at least 10 games in eight consecutive seasons, a trend that should continue in 2009. He has coached in a bowl in every season since 1992.

7. Jim Tressel, Ohio State
Though the Big Ten has its share of critics, Tressel might say going 1-2 in national championship games is a good problem to have. The Buckeyes have won outright or shared five Big Ten titles since 2002.

8. Joe Paterno, Penn State
JoePa likely will finish his career as the all-time wins leader after Bobby Bowden vacates 14 wins. Paterno's program is in better shape after reaching the Rose Bowl last season.

9. Jim Grobe, Wake Forest
Grobe has made once-lowly Wake Forest relevant by leading the Demon Deacons to three consecutive bowl games.

10. Mike Riley, Oregon State
Riley has led the perennially underrated Beavers to the second-best record in the Pac-10 over the past three seasons. He is the only active Pac-10 coach to beat Pete Carroll twice.

11. Mark Richt, Georgia
Georgia has posted at least eight wins in each of Richt's eight seasons. The Bulldogs went 10-3 last year - and it was considered a disappointment.

12. Mike Leach, Texas Tech
He has made Texas Tech nationally relevant. The Red Raiders have posted at least eight wins in seven consecutive seasons.

13. Brian Kelly, Cincinnati
Cincinnati has posted consecutive seasons of double-digit victories under Kelly. Before that, the Bearcats' last 10-win season came in 1951.

14. Gary Patterson, TCU
Patterson frequently has had TCU on the brink of making a BCS bowl. This could be the season the Frogs finally break through.

15. Kyle Whittingham, Utah
An undefeated season with a Sugar Bowl victory over Nick Saban cannot be ignored.

16. Les Miles, LSU
If the '07 national championship isn't impressive enough, consider he also had three consecutive winning seasons at Oklahoma State. And that was before T. Boone Pickens started pouring millions into that program.

17. Paul Johnson, Georgia Tech
His teams have had six consecutive seasons with at least eight wins. And five of those seasons came at Navy.

18. Houston Nutt, Ole Miss
His teams at Arkansas won consistently. Ole Miss improved from three wins to nine in one season under Nutt.

19. Jeff Tedford, California
Before Tedford's arrival, Cal was coming off a 1-10 finish and had gone eight years without a winning record. The Bears haven't had a losing season since and shared the Pac-10 title with USC in 2006.

20. Kirk Ferentz, Iowa
After three consecutive seasons with double-digit wins, injuries and other issues resulted in three straight disappointing seasons from 2005-07. But the Hawkeyes rebounded for a 9-4 finish in '08.

(Rankings by staffers Olin Buchanan, Tom Dienhart, David Fox, Mike Huguenin and Steve Megargee.)

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