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Ohio State is 7-0 in the first year under new head coach Urban Meyer. Penn State is off to a 4-2 start as they head to Iowa in the first year under Bill O’Brien. Both new coaches have sparked their programs in times of need on various levels, but which one would be the coach of the year in the Big Ten if the vote was held today?
Athlon Sports asked that question to a round table, which I was happy to participate in. Here is what I had to say…
One of the key factors I like to look at when determining who should be coach of the year is what do they have to work with. At Ohio State Urban Meyer inherited a pretty solid program from top to bottom with a Braxton Miller sitting there waiting to be groomed. At Penn State Bill O’Brien took over a program ripped of its heart and soul and destined for some of the heaviest sanctions the college sports world has seen in a long time, which would lead the team’s star running back, leading receiver and best kicker create their own exit plans in addition to a handful of others to hurt some depth. Both coaches have dealt with some adversity on the football field as well, with Meyer’s defense being shredded by Indiana most recently and with O’Brien’s team dropping the first two games of the season.
Credit to Meyer for coming away with wins each week so far but also credit to O’Brien for not losing his team when they started off 0-2. The season could have been lost right out of the gate for O’Brien but he and his team have rattled off four straight wins heading in to their bye week. If you take a closer look at both teams, you will also see that Penn State has shown signs of improvement on a weekly basis overall despite depth and injury issues at times. Both coaches are doing fine jobs, but after half a season, O’Brien is the clear leader for coach of the year in the Big Ten, and perhaps the nation.
Be sure to read the full article to see what the guys from Athlon and Legends Poll voter Dick MacPherson had to say. Which would get your vote?
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