2020 Hot Seat Rankings: Jim Harbaugh, Ed Orgeron among college football coaches heating up

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Just when you were thinking there were would be a bunch of mulligans handed out to college football coaches this season amid COVID-19, South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner beat everyone to igniting the silly season. Never mind the season is shortened, athletic budgets have been set on fire and players themselves have gotten that mulligan (an extra year of eligibility). Tanner couldn’t keep Will Muschamp, who was fired Monday.

Muschamp had his shortcomings, sure, but is anyone safe now?

It may be time to reevaluate what looked like it would be a slow offseason for coaching changes. South Carolina is a middling SEC program. It will take at least $30 million commitment to pay off Muschamp and hire a new staff. How’s that for belt tightening?

All of this happened just as we were set to update our Hot Seat Rankings. This is where we started

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What is the buyout for Jeremy Pruitt, Jim Chaney?

When Tennessee hired Jeremy Pruitt as football coach in December 2017, university leaders wanted to stop cycling through coaches every few years.

Tennessee showed faith in Pruitt by awarding him a contract extension in September that included a bonus and a raise beginning in 2021.

But the Vols have regressed in Pruitt’s third season.

Tennessee (2-4) is on a four-game losing streak entering a game against No. 21 Auburn (4-2) on Saturday (7 p.m. ET, ESPN). With a loss Saturday, the Vols would have their longest losing streak since starting the 1988 season 0-6.

Firing Pruitt and his coaching staff would be a costly move at a bad time, with the athletic department cash-strapped because of the pandemic.


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Pruitt, thanks to his recent extension, is under contract until Jan. 31, 2026. That’s five more seasons. If Tennessee fired him on, say, Dec.

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Howard University Receives $1 Million Gift from Heather and Jim Murren to Launch the Center for Women, Gender and Global Leadership

“We are extremely grateful to Trustee Jim Murren and Mrs. Heather Hay Murren for this generous $1 million gift to create the Center for Women, Gender and Global Leadership at Howard University. Our students’ college experiences will be significantly enriched through this program, which will empower Black women to continue to take their rightful place as leaders in every facet of our society and the global community,” says President Frederick.

The Center will be led by J. Jarpa Dawuni, Esq., Ph.D., Howard’s esteemed associate professor of political science, who has been recognized as a Fulbright Specialist Scholar and a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow. The Center’s academic focus will include producing innovative and theoretically grounded research and creating a data center on issues of women and gender in the United States and the global Black diaspora. The Center will provide opportunities for students through scholarships and internships. Additionally, the

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Jim Bridenstine is leaving NASA. How should we assess his 30-month tenure?

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine testifies before a US Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation committee on September 30, 2020.
Enlarge / NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine testifies before a US Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation committee on September 30, 2020.

Nicholas Kamm-Pool/Getty Images

The first thing to know about James Frederick Bridenstine, who has served as NASA’s administrator for a little more than 30 months, is that he was not staying on as the space agency’s leader regardless of the presidential election results.

Not that he wants out of the job. Bridenstine has relished the challenge of leading NASA through troubling times and overcoming initial concerns about his partisanship to lead NASA—all of NASA—through the turbulent years of the Trump administration. Nor is it because he has failed. Bridenstine has largely succeeded in pushing the agency forward and will leave it better than he found it.

But the reality is that a Democratic president was never going to keep Bridenstine, who has a political rather than a technical background,

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How the late Alex Trebek and ‘Jeopardy!’ prepared Eagles’ Jim Schwartz for an NFL coaching career

PHILADELPHIA — Jim Schwartz and some of his classmates at Georgetown had a ritual in the late 1980s. After dinner each night, the future Eagles defensive coordinator and his friends watched “Jeopardy!” and competed with each other to come out on top.

And while Schwartz didn’t know he would go on to become an NFL head coach and longtime defensive coordinator, the game show taught him an important lesson that became applicable as he advanced through the coaching ranks.

“It’s not just getting the right answer,” Schwartz said on a Zoom call Monday. “It’s getting the right answer quicker than everybody else.”

Longtime “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek died over the weekend after a battle with pancreatic cancer. Trebek began hosting the trivia show in 1984 and became an institution for people of all ages who tuned in to watch the show on weeknights.

The influence of “Jeopardy!” has permeated many

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NASA chief Jim Bridenstine says it’s in the ‘best interest of NASA’ for him to resign rather than work for the Biden administration

Jim Bridenstine wearing a suit and tie: NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine speaks at a briefing on NASA's Artemis program, September 11, 2019 at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington. NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

© NASA/Aubrey Gemignani
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine speaks at a briefing on NASA’s Artemis program, September 11, 2019 at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington. NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said he would not stay on as head of the agency under a Biden administration, even if asked by the president-elect.


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Bridenstine, a Republican, represented Oklahoma’s 1st Congressional District before President Donald Trump appointed him to NASA’s top position. But he stressed that his plan to step down is not based on party affiliation. Rather, Bridenstine said, he would do so to ensure that the next leader of the agency could be someone with a longer-term relationship to Biden. 

“The right question here is, ‘What’s in the best interest of NASA as an agency, and what’s in the best interest of America’s exploration program?'” Bridenstine told Aviation Week. “For that, what you need is somebody who

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Jim Bridenstine will step aside as NASA chief when President Biden takes over: report

NASA will apparently be getting a new leader after president-elect Joe Biden is sworn in.

Jim Bridenstine wearing a suit and tie: In this October 2019 photo, NASA chief Jim Bridenstine helps unveil two spacesuits the agency is designing for its Artemis moon program.

© Provided by Space
In this October 2019 photo, NASA chief Jim Bridenstine helps unveil two spacesuits the agency is designing for its Artemis moon program.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine won’t remain in the agency’s lead role in the Biden administration even if asked, Aerospace Daily & Defense Report reported on Sunday (Nov. 8). 


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“You need somebody who has a close relationship with the president of the U.S. … somebody trusted by the administration …. including OMB [Office of Management and Budget], National Space Council, National Security Council,” Bridenstine told Irene Klotz, space editor for Aviation Week, Aerospace Daily & Defense Report’s parent publication. “I think I would not be the right person for that in a new administration.”

Klotz’s story is behind a paywall, but she posted on Twitter a series of

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Forecasting college football’s coaching carousel — Hugh Freeze, Steve Sarkisian, Jim Harbaugh and more

We know the college football coaching carousel will be limited this year. The only question is: How much?

Financial challenges stemming from the coronavirus pandemic are real. When combined with reduced game schedules and coach-friendly contracts, schools will need extreme motivation to make changes in the coming weeks.

This past weekend wasn’t very good for those rooting for carousel craziness. The thought of 10-15 coaching changes, half of a typical coaching cycle, seems highly unlikely.

So let’s speculate instead. Last year, when things were normal but the upcoming carousel looked a little dull, I put together a list of hypotheticals. Too many people didn’t read the operative word — “hypothetical”– but it was fun to forecast what could happen.

What follows isn’t necessarily a prediction, but a rundown of potential carousel nuggets (spicy ones!), based on what industry sources are telling me. Though it’s unlikely all of these send the

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Engineer Jim McDonald: ‘Getting to university was the start of this journey’

Professor Sir Jim McDonald, 63, was elected president of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2019. One of Scotland’s most accomplished engineers, he has been principal and vice-chancellor of the University of Strathclyde since 2009 and co-chairs the Scottish government’s Energy Advisory Board. He was knighted in 2012 for services to education, engineering and the economy.

What was your childhood or earliest ambition?
To be like my dad. He was my hero. I lost him when I was 12.

Private school or state school? University or straight into work?
I was brought up and educated in Govan, the shipbuilding district in the heart of Glasgow. State schools: primary schools, St Anthony’s and St Constantine’s; secondary, St Gerard’s. I was planning to leave at 16 and go into the shipyards. Advice from my mother and encouragement from my teachers persuaded me to stay on and go to Strathclyde University. I was

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Why Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan football team is unlike any he has coached


Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh met with media members in a Zoom call on Monday, leading into the first week of the 2020 season.

Detroit Free Press

This has been an offseason unlike any other for programs across the country, but especially for Jim Harbaugh and Michigan football.  

Six months ago, the Wolverines were preparing to begin spring practices when the COVID-19 outbreak canceled all athletic activities. The players scattered across the country, with some returning home and others staying near campus. Schembechler Hall, where the team would usually meet to work out and practice, stayed closed. 

Eventually, Michigan was allowed to resume offseason workouts. The players returned in June and began preparing for a fall season. The program was inundated with questions of whether they would play this fall. A schedule was released. Then came the bombshell in mid-August: The Big Ten was postponing all fall sports. 


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