College Football’s Week 3 has been played. Here are this week’s SEC hot seat rankings. A pivotal loss sees a shift at the top from last week.
Gus Malzahn [Auburn] Malzahn lost a hot seat six-pointer to Kevin Sumlin at home, by two touchdowns. That’s now 10 losses in 12 SEC games dating back to late 2014 and 12 losses in 15 Power 5 games. Auburn has two losses and a rough remaining schedule. Unless John Franklin III morphs into Nick Marshall, it’s hard to see how this is tenable. LSU is a must-win. So was Texas A&M.
Mark Stoops [Kentucky] Kentucky got its first win of the season, pulling away from New Mexico State in the second half while conceding 42 points. Bowl or bust is looking like bust at this point. The only argument for keeping Stoops is the cost of firing him. Two of Kentucky’s next three are South Carolina and Vandy at home. If Stoops does not win those games…
Les Miles [LSU] LSU took a 23-3 lead into halftime against Mississippi State. Then, the Tigers got shut out in the second half and nearly blew it for a 23-20 win. The team’s offensive futility, given the recruiting input, remains inexcusable. The Auburn game, which has been a tough away trip for LSU, may be as critical for Miles. LSU still has five ranked opponents on the schedule, three away from home.
Derek Mason [Vanderbilt] Vanderbilt lost 38-7 to Georgia Tech. Their defense was ill-prepared to stop GT’s option. Vanderbilt offensive possessions after the opening touchdown drive: Punt, Punt, Punt, Punt, Downs, Punt, Punt, Interception, Punt, Punt. Game Over. This was a Tech team that needed a touchdown in the final minute to beat Boston College. Things aren’t looking so great.
Butch Jones [Tennessee] Tennessee played (the) Ohio University as a four-touchdown favorite at home and steadily outlasted them for a nine-point win. The Vols’ offense remains predictable and performs inconsistently. Things could (and perhaps should) be worse. Tennessee is still undefeated. But, Butch Jones will go rocketing up these rankings if the Vols’ can’t break their 11-game losing streak to Florida at home against the Gators’ backup quarterback (who couldn’t beat out Luke Del Rio).