The woman who originally ranked Carter-Finley Stadium the ACC’s 11th toughest place to play while ranking Kenan Stadium 4th because of its scenic beauty…
This place is just the right size, and the picturesque pine trees make this one of the nicest venues in the league. Butch Davis has an amazing view of all of it from his office.
…appears to be stepping in it again.
Before the 2008 ACC Football season began, Dinich ranked the ACC’s Head Coaches in this entry that SFN ignored. The list was ok, although it seemed to be long on opinion and short on statistics as evidenced by the most perplexing item that immediately pops off the page – the ranking of David Cutcliffe at Duke at #4 ahead of a laundry list of coaches with significantly more impressive career results like Tom O’Brien, Tommy Bowdem, Ralph Friedgen and even Butch Davis.
You couldn’t justify Dinich’s selection at the time on the grounds of ‘newness’ because Paul Johnson was also new and was slotted at #9 despite a highly successful run at also-ran, Navy compared to Cutcliffe’s six-year run at Ole Miss that was good enough to get him fired.
Q: So, what did a last place finish and 1-7 ACC record with a roster full of upperclassmen get Cutcliffe in the post-season rankings?
A: 4th place, of course!!
Don’t you understand? While Tom O’Brien added to a decade of success by building a bowl team in a year he lost more games to injury than anyone in the league (by a factor of more than 2x), David Cutcliffe was adding to his significantly less successful resume with a 1-7 record. Who wouldn’t understand that? (sarcasm).
I also shake my head at the logic behind dropping Ralph Friedgen to #10 from #8 while raising Jeff Jagodzinski to #5 from #11.
Let me make sure I get this straight:
- Jagodsinski has coached for two years with a roster full of upper-class talent he inherited from Tom O’Brien – including Matt Ryan. Jags has obviously performed well in a balanced conference by making the ACC Championship game twice (never winning).
- Eight years ago Friedgen inherited a program in the same stratosphere as Cutcliffe inherited and responded by making an appearance in the Orange Bowl. He has compiled a 63-36 while appearing in six bowl games over eight years.
Remember, over the course of this one season Friedgen fell two spots and Jagodsinski rose six spots – with Tom O’Brien’s players. So, BC must have had a helluva year compared to Maryland, right?
Uh…no. BC finished a whopping one game ahead of Maryland in the Atlantic Division standings defeating the Terps at the end of the year for the right to play in the ACC Championship game. Hmmmmm….
I’m not arguing that Friedgen is necessarily that much of a better coach than Jagodsinski. I guess I wouldn’t even argue too much if you wanted to take a flier and rank Jagodsinski ahead of Friedgen. I am arguing that there is no rational basis for making such wild moves in the rankings after setting the baseline in August. The inconsistency of thought and methodology in compiling these rankings severely undercuts Dinich’s credibility.
To be fair, Dinich quickly ‘updated’ her embarrassing stadium rankings in August with an amended ranking in response to broad reader outcry from around the conference. The follow-up piece can be seen here.
If Dinich doesn’t re-rank this list – or at least statistically explain the list – then she leaves us no choice but to presume the ranking criteria are important things like the coaches’ sense of fashion, office decor, and general cuteness… just like Kenan Stadium is such a pretty place to place.