College Football: Head Coaches in their First Top Five Showdown
Posted by Andrew McKillop on September 16, 2011
- Head coaches have a record of 71-67-5 (.514 W Pct) in their first AP top 5 showdown.
- Of the 67 head coaches that lost their first AP top 5 showdown, 41 would/have never coached in a battle of AP top 5 teams again.
- Bobby Bowden lost his first AP top 5 showdown. Coincidentally it was to Oklahoma in the 1980 Orange Bowl.
In only his second season Jimbo Fisher has Florida State back in the AP top 5. Fisher faces a huge task on Saturday, when No. 5 Florida State plays host to No. 1 Oklahoma. For the first time in his head coaching career, Fisher will coach in a game featuring two AP top 5 schools.
At the surface, I would assume that head coaches in their first AP top 5 showdown would have a losing record. But a deeper look into the numbers finds some surprising information. Head coaches inexperienced in top 5 showdowns have a respectable record. Check out the table below for more info.
|HC’s in their First AP Top 5 vs. AP Top 5 Game||71||67||5||0.514|
|vs. Higher a Ranked Opponent||38||45||2||0.459|
|vs. Lower a Ranked Opponent||33||22||3||0.595|
|vs. HC’s in their 2nd/3rd/… Top 5 vs. Top 5 Game||41||37||1||0.525|
|vs. Higher a Ranked Opponent||26||28||0||0.481|
|vs. Lower a Ranked Opponent||15||9||1||0.620|
When a head coach is facing an AP No. 1 in their first AP top 5 showdown, they have a record of 16-19 (.457 W Pct).
Of the 67 head coaches that lost their first AP top 5 showdown, 41 would/have never coached in an AP top 5 battle again.
Bobby Bowden, the legendary head coach that Jimbo Fisher replaced at Florida State. Lost his first AP top 5 showdown. Coincidentally it was to Oklahoma in the 1980 Orange Bowl.