Possible Coaching Candidate: Gary Patterson

If I told you to name me the only head coaches in this decade to have over 50 wins, you'd probably take a moment, quickly scan the conferences, and then list some names like Bob Stoops, Pete Carroll, and Mack Brown.

And, you'd be absolutely correct. However, a name that would not be on the minds of any college football fan, no matter how dedicated and involved they are, would be Gary Patterson of TCU.

Since taking over in 2001, Patterson has composed a remarkable 51-20 record while coaching the Horned Frogs, which places him among the nations elite for this decade.

Born on February 13th, 1960 in Larned Kansas, Patterson attended and played football for Kansas State University. In 1982, it was his alma mater that gave him his first shot at coaching, as he was hired to be an assistant to Jim Dickey.

Patterson learned the ropes of coaching and eventually landed a defensive coordinator job in 1996 with the University of New Mexico. He guided the Lobo's defense for two years before accepting the same position at Texas Christian University in 1998. Another two-year stop, and another promotion would follow as he was officially named the TCU head coach at the end of the 2000 season.

Nineteen years after he began his coaching career, Patterson finally got the opportunity to be the headman in charge, and he made the most of this chance. In his first full season as the head coach at TCU, he helped lead the Horned Frog's to a 6-6 record and a berth in the GalleryFurniture.com bowl.

In the two seasons that followed, the nation would really begin to appreciate the impact that Patterson had on his team. From 2002-2003, the Horned Frogs compiled an amazing 21-4 record under Patterson, landing spots in the Liberty and Fort Worth Bowls.

The 2004 season was a disappointing one, as TCU saw many key seniors leave, and a record of 5-6 slowly pile up. Despite this poor season, Patterson stayed the course and bounced back in 2005 with an remarkable 11-1 regular season record, meanwhile landing TCU's first ever Mountain West Conference Championship.

They would go on to finish this incredible year with a 27-24 win over Iowa State in the Houston Bowl. Currently, TCU is sitting at 8-2 with a chance to win the conference again this year as Patterson continues to build his program into a perennial winner.

While Patterson's stay at TCU so far has been short, his results and impact have been huge. He is currently part of an elite club of 50 plus win coaches which include some names like Bob Stoops, Pete Carroll, Jim Tressell, and Mack Brown. In his six years at TCU, he is already third on the career victory chart, with 51 wins.

Not only is Patterson the only head coach in Horned Frog history to record three ten win seasons, but he's also coached 50 All-Conference selections, five All-Americans, six Freshman All-Americans and one Academic All-American.

During his tenure, TCU is averaging an amazing 30 points per game, as well as knocking off some major programs. Patterson boasts some big wins over teams including Oklahoma, Utah, Iowa State, and Texas Tech.

As the Hurricanes contact guys like Steve Spurrier, Bob Stoops, and Greg Schiano to fill their coaching vacancy, an equally qualified candidate quietly resides in Fort Worth, Texas.

Miami, a team never known for hiring the big name coach, usually instead opting for a young, hungry, up and comer, seem to be missing out on a great oppurnity to grab one of the nation's best in Gary Patterson.

They say "if it ain't broke, don't fix it," then why deviate from the plan that got you here?

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