ARIZONA STATE FOOTBALL

Thamel lists ASU’s Herm Edwards among 4 on college football hot seat

Aug 10, 2022, 5:01 PM

Head coach Herm Edwards of the Arizona State Sun Devils before the NCAAF game against the Washingto...

Head coach Herm Edwards of the Arizona State Sun Devils before the NCAAF game against the Washington State Cougars at Sun Devil Stadium on October 30, 2021 in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Arizona State football players have noticed all the negative headlines from the past year of an NCAA investigation hovering over the program. Some will surely use it as motivational material.

And there’s been a lot of it.

They can add another one that specifically addresses the status of their football team’s CEO.

ESPN’s Pete Thamel named ASU head coach Herm Edwards as one of four coaches on the hot seat heading into the 2022 season. He joins Nebraska’s Scott Frost, Auburn’s Bryan Harsin and Georgia Tech’a Geoff Collins on the list.

ASU has a bad roster, underwhelming staff and the Pac-12’s worst recruiting class in 2023. All that, and a milquetoast 25-18 record under Edwards. ASU passed on starting over when the scope of the potential allegations against Edwards became apparent. Instead, they’ve emboldened the aggrieved staffers who claim they got pushed out for not cheating, who have been overloading NCAA investigators with evidence of the violations under Edwards’ watch. And the only people who don’t see this ending poorly are in the president’s and AD chairs in Tempe.

Thamel specifically targets Arizona State University president Michael Crow’s hypocrisy in his writeup and also points to vice president for university athletics Ray Anderson’s relationship as Edwards’ former agent.

The cartoonish way that AD Ray Anderson attempted to spin the hire of Edwards — his former client when Anderson was an agent — back in 2017 now reads like an article from The Onion.

Of course, there are complicating matters about Edwards still having a gig.

Edwards would cost $8 million in buyout money if ASU just fired him without cause, and finding cause isn’t as clean until the NCAA investigation into the team’s recruiting tactics during the pandemic gets close to wrapping up.

Crow told The Athletic on Tuesday that some coaches haven’t even been questioned by the NCAA thus far. So even though a handful of assistant coaches departed with their names linked to misdeeds related to the scandal, Edwards remains with a job.

The Sun Devils’ heavy roster turnover from a year ago and transition to working with two new coordinators will make for little room for error this season.

The players who joined ASU or returned, of course, have rallied around one another after hearing all this noise since the investigation opened before the 2021 season. If that’s good enough to execute and win, it will help push back against calls for Edwards’ job to end here.

If not, Arizona State will be more and more under the microscope, and pressure will build from the fan base that has seen recruiting and player retainment abilities crumble during these uncertain times.

Arizona State Football

Brandon Aiyuk #11 of the San Francisco 49ers runs with the ball during the first half against the G...

Kellan Olson

49ers star WR Brandon Aiyuk officially requests trade, per reports

With the clock getting nearer and nearer to a new NFL season, Brandon Aiyuk appears to be fed up with waiting on the 49ers to meet his price.

4 days ago

Wide receiver Tetairoa McMillan #4 of the Arizona Wildcats runs with the football against the Arizo...

Bailey Leasure

ESPN’s Connelly projects college football win totals for ASU, Arizona

ESPN's Bill Connelly projects win total for Arizona State and Arizona in their first season in the Big 12 conference.

7 days ago

(Graphic via Valero Alamo Bowl)...

Arizona Sports

Former Pac-12 teams in Big 12, elsewhere will retain prior bowl game affiliation

The Pac-12 announced that former conference members in the Big Ten, Big 12 and ACC will keep the old bowl game affiliations.

8 days ago

Brett Yormark, Big 12 commissioner...

Ryan Pasiecznik

Notable Arizona State, Arizona legends named to first-ever Big 12 Alumni Council

Four alumni who made their imprint on the Arizona schools were named to the first Big 12 Alumni Council on Wednesday.

9 days ago

Arizona State Sun Devils helmets during the college football game between the Utah Utes and the Ari...

Ryan Pasiecznik

Arizona State football enters Big 12 conference with ‘external motivation’

Arizona State football heads into its first year in the Big 12 conference with plenty to prove to its naysayers.

10 days ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Big 12 commissioner Brett Yormark says the conference is the deepest in college football

Big 12 commissioner Brett Yormark says the conference is the deepest in college football

10 days ago

Thamel lists ASU’s Herm Edwards among 4 on college football hot seat