7. Sam Pittman — Arkansas Razorbacks
Who would’ve thought that Pittman would be one of the better head coaches in the country?
The longtime position coach showed promise in 2020 — his first year as a head coach.
And then in 2021, Pittman and the Razorbacks took a major step forward, winning nine games while knocking off Texas A&M and LSU.
Pittman has the looks of a coach that’s going to be giving opposing SEC West programs a hard time for years to come.
6. Lane Kiffin — Ole Miss Rebels
Kiffin might be the most polarizing coach in college football.
But you can’t deny that he’s a good coach. Kiffin went 5-5 in 2020 at Ole Miss — his first year leading an SEC program since his one season at Tennessee in 2009. Then this past season, Kiffin led the Rebels to 10 wins for the first time in program history.
That’s an extremely quick turnaround.
5. Jimbo Fisher — Texas A&M Aggies
Fisher has a national title to his name (from his time at Florida State) so that automatically puts him pretty high on the list.
I’d like to put him higher, but he hasn’t won 10 games since 2016. He’s yet to lead the Aggies to more than nine wins after signing a mega-contract.
But he also beat Saban and Alabama this year. I think he’s one of the better coaches in college football. However, I’m not quite sure he’s worth the hype.
4. Mark Stoops — Kentucky Wildcats
This could be controversial. But I truly believe Stoops is one of the most underrated coaches in college sports.
Stoops has led Kentucky to 10 wins twice in the last four years. He’s has a career-winning record at UK over his nine seasons in Lexington (59-53).
That kind of success at Kentucky is unheard of.
Kentucky is a basketball school. They’re supposed to be a doormat in college football.
Stoops, however, has turned them into a legitimate program that’s a threat to win nearly any game they play.
Imagine what Stoops could do at a “football school”.