|Mike Locksley is not alone among coaches who've come and gone in the Paterno years. (US Presswire)|
When Mike Locksley was fired at New Mexico on Sunday, he joined an elite group of coaches. OK, maybe not so elite, but still Locksley became part of a special club -- the latest coach to be replaced at a FBS school since 1966. The significance of that year? That was when Joe Paterno began as head coach at Penn State. Since Paterno debuted as the Nittany Lions' head coach in 1966 there have been 886 coaching changes among the current 120 FBS schools.
New Mexico defensive coordinator George Barlow, who was named the Lobos interim head coach, becomes lucky No. 886 on Saturday against New Mexico State. Those 886 coaching changes include any interim coach who coached at least one game and does not include a coach that was hired, but never coached a game at that school, such as George O'Leary at Notre Dame, Mike Haywood at Pittsburgh and Mike Price at Alabama.
Since Paterno started at Penn State, the automatic qualifying BCS schools with the most head coaching turnover are Miami and Cincinnati, each with 13 coaching changes in the past 45 years -- or a coaching change every 3.46 years.
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Since Paterno started at Penn State, Miami has gone through Walt Kichefski, Fran Curci, Peter Elliot, Carl Selmer, Lou Saban, Howard Schnellenberger, Jimmy Johnson, Dennis Erickson, Butch Davis, Larry Coker, Jeff Stoutland and Randy Shannon before Al Golden took over this year.
Cincinnati's 13 coaches since 1966: Homer Rice, Ray Callahan, Tony Mason, Ralph Staub, Mike Gottfried, Watson Brown, Dave Currey, Tim Murphy, Rick Minter, Mark Dantonio, Brian Kelly, Jeff Quinn and Butch Jones.
Miami and Cincinnati are among seven automatic qualifying BCS schools that have had at least 10 coaching changes since 1966. The others: Stanford (12), Georgia Tech and Vanderbilt (11 each) and Louisville and Pittsburgh (10 each).
Notre Dame has had eight coaching changes.
The ACC's current membership has had the most coaching changes of the automatic qualifying BCS leagues with 96. The Pac-12 was next with 92, followed by the SEC with 88.
The number of coaching changes by BCS schools since Paterno started at Penn State.
ACC (96): Miami 13, Georgia Tech 11, Duke 9, Maryland 9, NC State 9, Boston College 8, Clemson 8, Wake Forest 8, North Carolina 7, Virginia 6, Virginia Tech 4, Florida State 4.
Pac-12 (93): Stanford 12, Arizona 9, Colorado 9, Cal 8, UCLA 8, Utah 8, Washington State 8, Arizona State 7, Oregon 6, Oregon State 6, USC 6, Washington 6.
SEC (88): Vanderbilt 11, Florida 9, Ole Miss 9, Alabama 8, Arkansas 8, Kentucky 8, LSU 7, Mississippi State 7, South Carolina 7, Auburn 6, Tennessee 5, Georgia 3.
Big Ten (73): Michigan State 9, Minnesota 9, Illinois 8, Indiana 8, Purdue 8, Northwestern 7, Wisconsin 7, Michigan 5, Nebraska 4, Iowa 4, Ohio State 4, Penn State 0.
Big 12 (70): Kansas 9, Texas Tech 9, Oklahoma State 8, Iowa State 8, Baylor 7, Kansas State 7, Texas A&M 7, Missouri 6, Oklahoma 5, Texas 4.
Big East (57): Cincinnati 13, Louisville 10, Pittsburgh 10, UConn 7, West Virginia 6, Rutgers 5, Syracuse 5, South Florida 1.
BCS Bowl Projections
BCS Title: LSU vs. Oklahoma. I've got LSU and Oklahoma ranked first and second on my AP Top 25 ballot. So until either team stumbles, I've got them headed to New Orleans. It would be the second BCS title game matchup between the Tigers and Sooners in New Orleans in eight seasons.
Fiesta: Oklahoma State vs. Boise State. The Cowboys rallied past Texas A&M to distinguish Oklahoma State as the Big 12's second-best team. That should land the Cowboys in Glendale, Ariz., to replace the Sooners. Another lopsided win for Boise State keeps the Broncos unbeaten.
Sugar: Alabama vs. Oregon: LaMichael James is back in full gear for the Ducks, who have responded nicely since their season-opening loss to LSU. I also considered putting Nebraska here as an at-large selection, but I want to see how the Cornhuskers fare in consecutive games against Wisconsin and Ohio State. If LSU advances to the BCS title game, the Sugar will replace the Tigers with Alabama, the SEC's next-best team.
Rose: Stanford vs. Wisconsin. The Badgers' open Big Ten play against Nebraska Saturday with the winner the early favorite to make a run for the Roses. Stanford plays host to Oregon on Nov. 12, which likely will decide the Pac-12 North champion.
Orange: Virginia Tech vs. South Florida. The Hokies appear the likely ACC champion and finally get tested Saturday when undefeated Clemson comes to Blacksburg, Va. With West Virginia's loss last week, South Florida appears the team to beat in the Big East. Are the Bulls the Big East's best? We'll get a better idea Thursday when they visit Pittsburgh.
How my Heisman Trophy ballot would look if it were due today:
1. Robert Griffin III, Baylor. Granted Baylor has not played the most difficult schedule, but still what Griffin has done to this point is ridiculous: 13 touchdown passes and only 12 incompletions. And two of those incompletions were drops. Griffin gets his first road test Saturday at Kansas, and later has a three-game stretch vs. Texas A&M, Oklahoma State and Missouri that can help his Heisman campaign.
2. Kellen Moore, Boise State. Moore's numbers (79 percent completion rate), passing efficiency (192.55) and TD passes (12) rank second, third and third, respectively. Will Heisman voters penalize Moore for racking up numbers against a less-than stellar schedule?
3. Andrew Luck, Stanford. After a week off, Luck and the Cardinal open Pac-12 play with UCLA. Luck only ranks 12th nationally in passing efficiency (173.44) and 30th in passing yards per game (262), but still has the Pac-12 schedule to climb up the charts.
Tweets of the Week
Some of the best college football-related tweets in the past week pulled from Twitter.
"RT Since the Big East added Louisville, Cincy, USF in 05, departing members Pitt and Syracuse won one third of one title." -- Cincinnati coach Butch Jones retweeting a tweet from Mike Decourcy about Pitt and Syracuse announcing they're leaving for the ACC.
"Beyond weird to have to root against #Pittsburgh and #Syracuse and from here on out. #bigeaststillrules." -- Ben Fairclough, the Big East's Senior Director of External Affairs.
"Screw it. I say we go independent … lol ... and schedule like 8-10 ranked opponents every season." -- Oklahoma sophomore RB Brennan Clay on Sooners staying in Big 12.
"We started last two years 5 and 0. We happy about everything so far but know it's a long season and we gotta FINISH." -- Michigan senior WR Darryl Stonum about the Wolverines 5-0 starts past two years that ended in 7-6 and 5-7 seasons.
"I hope my 5th grade teacher follows me on twitter. Told me I'll be in jail or not make it to college. She prolly hate seein me on Saturdays." -- Oklahoma sophomore DB Tony Jefferson.
"When you were called 'the Future' in the past, its time to work harder in the present." -- Arizona sophomore QB Tom Savage, who transferred from Rutgers after starting as a true freshman and later being replaced.
"If all my future plans happen to fail, I'm just gone go model for JcPenny and Polo underwear line lol #serioustweet." -- Missouri sophomore WR L'Damian Washington.
"HAHA I just learned that Rick Perry was a cheerleader in college aka known as yell leader at our little brother college." -- Texas freshman CB Quandre Diggs.
"I ain't tweeting till next Saturday after the game." -- West Virginia senior DE Bruce Irvin after the Mountaineers' loss to LSU.