Coaches on hot seat

That hot seat Ed Orgeron was sitting on when the 2007 football season began turned out to be an ejector seat. Ole Miss tossed him after an underwhelming three-year rein that produced a 10-25 overall record and a 3-21 SEC mark.

Orgeron's departure leaves just one SEC coach on the hot seat heading into 2008, according to Dennis Dodd of That would be Vanderbilt's Bobby Johnson, owner of a 20-50 overall record entering his seventh season in Music City.

Dodd rates all 119 Div. 1-A coaches in a piece entitled "2008 Hot Seat Ratings: Coach by coach." His rating scale is as follows:

0-0.5: Can't be touched

1-1.5: Very safe

2-2.5: Solid position

3-3.5: On the bubble

4-4.5: Warm seat

5: It's time to win now

Dodd gives Johnson a 3.0 rating. The only other SEC coach with a rating above 2.0 is South Carolina's Steve Spurrier, who checks in at 2.5. Alabama's Nick Saban, Tennessee's Phillip Fulmer, Arkansas's Bobby Petrino and Ole Miss' Houston Nutt get 2.0 marks. Auburn's Tommy Tuberville, Kentucky's Rich Brooks, Mississippi State's Sylvester Croom check in at 1.0, while Florida's Urban Meyer, Georgia's Mark Richt and LSU's Les Miles are rock-solid at 0.0.

Incidentally, former Vol offensive coordinator David Cutcliffe gets a 2.0 rating heading into his rookie year as head man at Duke. Former Vol tight end and assistant coach Tommy West has a 2.5 rating as he enters Year 8 at Memphis.

Interestingly enough, Dodd has only five coaches rated 4.0 or better on the hot-seat meter. They are Mike Stoops of Arizona (4.0), Mike Sanford of UNLV (4.0), Brent Guy of Utah State (4.0), Greg Robinson of Syracuse (4.5) and Ty Willingham of Washington (4.95).

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