Oh, you thought the coaching carousel had come to a full and complete stop. Well, guess again! We’re back and open for business on the annual coaching carousel with news out of San Antonio on Tuesday afternoon.
Larry Coker, the first and only head coach in UTSA program history, will no longer be the head coach of the Road Runners according to CFT contributor Zach Barnett over on Football Scoop. The timing of the coaching change is peculiar, but the result is not exactly shocking. Coker had long been thought to be on his last legs with the program after initially helping to establish the program years before playing a single game.
What makes the timing of the coaching change odd is it feels late in the game for a coaching change. With national signing day now just a month away and many of the coaching vacancies already filled around college football, and the carousel focus shifting to the NFL as college assistant jobs, UTSA going on the market opens up an interesting position. Odds are probably pretty good UTSA will not fill the head coaching vacancy with an existing head coach from another FBS program, but a younger assistant on the rise looking for an opportunity to get a chance to be the head coach of a program. The future of the UTSA program has some potential to build a contending program in Conference USA based on its location, although the Texas football soil is as competitive as they can be.
Coker was 22-26 at UTSA from 2012 through the end of the 2015 season, but the win totals decreased each season under Coker’s watch as the scheduling difficulty increased each season. But remember that this was a brand new college football program, so losses were to be expected, especially when the program made the jump to the FBS perhaps earlier than initially scheduled due to conference realignment leaving the WAC (and later Conference USA) in need of filling spots to keep a conference together. UTSA and Texas State each made the jump up in competition at the same time, although the two have gone separate ways since making the transition.
Coker won a national championship at Miami in 2001, his first season as a head coach after taking over for Butch Davis. Miami played for the national championship the following season, only to lose to Ohio State. Coker won two more bowl games at Miami before being let go at the end of the 2006 season.