Bullet Points: Mike Haywood

Everyone seems to have an opinion whether it is good or bad about the new soon to be Pittsburgh Panthers Head Football Coach Mike Hayward.



The Positives of the Mike Haywood hire


  • Fiery, intense coach with a no nonsense attitude. Known as a tough guy, but also a player's coach who gets the most out of his players.
  • Very similar to coaches like Randy Edsall, Al Golden, Chris Petersen getting more out of less. Get players who fit your style and system, develop them and win football games.
  • Not afraid to play young players had 47 freshmen and sophomores on his 65 man travel squad. Recruits like to go where they can play, not much better proof than that.
  • Stickler for his rules and player accountability players where coats and ties to games. Coaches check on players in class. Makes coaches supervise study tables. On weekends players were not allowed out in town past 10:00 pm. No earrings, No hats inside buildings and no headphones once you leave team bus.
  • Very cerebral in his approach. Played for Lou Holtz and coached under Nick Saban and Mack Brown. He has adopted very similar philosophies as his mentors.
  • Very businesslike in his approach, a CEO style of coach, solid organizer and a stickler for the finite details.
  • Will open up doors in Texas and other areas where Pittsburgh has not recruited.
  • Young and hungry, Haywood is going to have a lot to prove to a lot of people.
  • Turned around a horrible program at Miami (Ohio) and won a conference championship. Regardless, of what conference to go from (1-11) to (9-4) and a conference championship is an accomplishment
  • Minority candidate, the first African American head football coach in Pitt history.
  • Haywood has shown the ability to be able to adjust under adversity and win the close games.
  • Haywood has coached every position on offense and even served as a recruiting coordinator. He coached with control freak Charlie Weis for a few years and probably realizes he needs to let his coaches have autonomy within his sytem.




The Negatives of the Mike Haywood hire


·         Pitt is likely a stepping stone for him. It will remain to be seen if this is the case or not.

·         He was not the first candidate that fans wanted to see hired and likely came at a reduced price, is he a generic candidate and did Pitt settle? Did he really get turned down by Minnesota?

·         He likely carries the fate of athletic director Steve Pederson squarely on his shoulders.

·         He is replacing a man (Dave Wannstedt) who was a Pitt guy and was loved by many including his players.

·         Can he sell Pitt to recruits like Wannstedt did?

·         Is he really ready for a BCS job after only two seasons at a MAC school?

·         His overall record at Miami of Ohio was (10-15). He lost to a horrid Cincinnati team (45-3), yes, the same team Pitt crushed.

·         Why should fans be exited and want to buy season tickets? Is he an upgrade over what was already in place?

·         He is always going to be under the microscope, especially if Dana Holgorsen succeeds at West Virginia and he does not.

·         Let's compare some other college football coaches past and present at the beginnings of their careers. Most of whom Pitt fans would have been tickled if they were hired. Doesn't look so bad, does it?

Gene Chizik was 5-19 at Iowa State prior to taking the Auburn job.
Al Golden
was 27-34 at Temple and was considered an early favorite.
Randy Edsall
started his career 11-23.
Mike Gundy 11-13 his first two years.
Brady Hoke 15-31 his first four years as a head coach.
Paul Rhoads
12-13 his first two years at Iowa State.
Kirk Ferentz
11-24 his first three years at Iowa.
Brian Kelly 10-12 his first two seasons at CMU.
Mack Brown started off 11-23 at Tulane before being hired at UNC. At UNC he started off 2-20 his first two years in Chapel Hill.
Johnny Majors 11-20 his first three seasons at Iowa State.
Jackie Sherrill
was 3-8 at Washington State before Pitt hired him.
Mark Dantonio
11-12 his first two seasons at Cincinnati.

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