There are a ridiculous number of coaching positions now available in college football. If the rumor mill is correct, LSU‘s head coaching spot may be one of them. Granted, play has been sloppy lately, but that doesn’t mean the team is done for the season. Let’s hope that LSU AD Joe Alleva looks at the team’s history and not the current slump. I must respectfully disagree with my cohort — Les Miles is a coaching legend and deserves a chance.
Yes, the Tigers have been struggling lately, but to dismiss a successful coach of a redoubtable program seems punitive and foolish. College football is not supposed to be solely about the tally in the win column — it is also supposed to be about training these kids for a productive adulthood. Life, and football, are marked by disappointment, but overcoming adversity is what defines us. In our throwaway society we have become spoiled; we want to see everything instantly. History means nothing. If LSU has a losing season the AD will most likely fire Miles, and that’s a shame.
His signature hat, his unconventional play calls and his idiosyncratic personality keep Saturdays interesting. I mean, the dude eats grass. College football has always been about the quirks of its coaches, and Miles is the quirkiest of them all. He is always fun to watch. Yet his unruffled determination to keep his team afloat even during tragedy — half of his 2005 team had families directly affected by Hurricane Katrina — also mark him as a true leader.
Miles’ resume also speaks volumes. He has won one national title and three division titles with the Tigers. His winning percentage is one of the highest in the country — even higher than rival Nick Saban‘s. He recruits great talent. Indeed, LSU has produced more NFL players than any other college program.
Miles is one of the few old-school, Bear-Bryant-style coaches left in college football. He is the kind of coach who has his own cult of personality. He is the kind of coach that epitomizes a program. In other words, when you think about a college team, colorful characters like Miles are what make college football so special. Their personality is what we associate with that team. For most of us, LSU football is Les Miles. To let him go would be doing the team a disservice, but regrettably I may be one of the few people with that opinion.