ASU’s Todd Graham here for the long haul…maybe

Sep 18, 2013, 10:37 PM | Updated: 10:38 pm

I know Todd Graham agreed to a contract extension with Arizona State, but this is football. Lane Kiffin had a deal with Tennessee, Bobby Petrino had one with the Falcons. ASU had one with June Jones.

Congrats on the new contract, Coach Graham, but the rumors of you leaving aren’t going to die.

It’s very simple: If you don’t want to be labeled a train robber, don’t rob trains.

And if you don’t want to be labeled a carpetbagger, stay where you are and get the job done that you agreed to do.

Four head coaching positions in seven years, Todd Graham has earned his reputation as someone on the constant lookout for greener pastures. And although the Sun Devil fan may have convinced him/herself that the grass don’t get no greener than what grows right here in Tempe, let’s face it, most college football fans are color blind.

For the record, I don’t expect Graham to be coaching anywhere but Arizona State University next season and for many seasons to come.


If ever there was an offseason where a reformed pasture hopper might get the itch to pack his carpetbags again, 2013 is going to be it.

I’m not being overdramatic by stating that the four best jobs in college football could be vacant at season’s end. Texas, USC, Alabama and LSU. Imagine all four of these monsters simultaneously searching for new head coaches.

Mack Brown is as good as gone at Texas. By all accounts, Brown is a sweetheart of a person, but his powerhouse of a program is in the tank. Considering Longhorn history, tradition, funding, facilities and recruiting base, it could be argued that Texas football’s head coaching position is the number one job in all of college sports. What coach wouldn’t be interested? I cetainly can’t imagine a 48-year-old ladder climber from Mesquite, Texas turning down a clandestined interview request.

Alabama. Look, you’re not going to improve upon Nick Saban. But who’s to say Saban isn’t ready for a change of scenery? After all, the man is infamously nomadic himself. Prior to ‘Bama, Saban hadn’t stayed longer than five years at any one place during a 25-year coaching career. This season marks his seventh in Tuscaloosa, and after three national titles in four years (possibly four in five), dude has nothing left to prove. Not to mention, the Tide program is currently under investigation for payments to athletes. Seriously, would anyone be shocked if Nick Saban left town to avoid the reaper?

LSU. Les Miles is in much warmer water than Saban. Sports Illustrated skewered the Tigers head coach for his lack of institutional control while at Oklahoma State. If the Cowboys are placed on probation for payments to players and the prostitution of female students, how can Miles possibly escape the NCAA’s wrath? NFL, here we come.

And let’s not forget those Trojans of USC. Lane Kiffin has the excuse of inheriting a program Pete Carroll left in a poisoned state. But in one year’s time, Kiffin’s Trojans went from preseason number one to a 7-5 season to losing 10-7 to Washington State in the 2013 home opener. Athletic Director Pat Haden claims Kiffin’s job is not in jeopardy, but who would believe such a foolish decree?

Texas, Alabama, LSU, USC, all hunting for head coaches in one offseason? Oh, it’s possible. It’s definitely possible.

And let’s not forget Mike Gundy’s role in the Oklahoma State fiasco. Oh, and Bo Pelini’s week at Nebraska. And then there are all the jobs that could become available because other prominent college coaches jumped on the chance to take their dream job at Texas or Alabama or LSU or so on.

Well, at that point, what’s an opportunistic head coach from a lesser program to do?

NOT listen if Texas calls?

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ASU’s Todd Graham here for the long haul…maybe