Ranking SEC Football 2024 Head Coach Hot Seats

Even with three new SEC football head coaches, more than a couple of the other 13 SEC coaches are in hot-seat situations for the 2024 season.

Across college football, the FBS level has thirty new hire head coaches for the 2024 season. Long tenures have become uncommon in college football. SEC Football has three new hires; Kalen DeBoer, Jeff Lebby, and Mike Elko. Hugh Freeze will be in his second season at Auburn. Brent Venables and Brian Kelly will be in their third seasons at Oklahoma and LSU. The old standard of giving head coaches four or five seasons to deliver no longer exists.

After Nick Saban's retirement, the longest-tenured SEC football head coach is Kentucky's Mark Stoops, with 2024 being his 12th season in Lexington. Kirby Smart, going into his ninth Georgia season is next. The next, longest-tenured SEC head coaches, Lane Kiffin and Eli Drinkwitz are going into their fifth seasons.

It is conceivable that up to nine of the SEC's current head coaches will never make it to a fifth season at their current program.

2024 SEC Football Hot Seats

1) Billy Napier - Florida Gators

Napier enters his third season in Gainesville with an 11-14 record. He performed well at Louisiana, winning 66.2% of his games, but 44% at Florida could be labeled malpractice. Napier got some good wins in his first Florida season, but in 2023 his only laudable win was over Tennessee in September. Florida has such a tough 2024 schedule that Napier might survive with seven wins, but it's possible he must gain eight to return for a fourth Florida season. Florida must pile up wins early because the Gators finish with Georgia, Texas, LSU, Ole Miss, and Florida State.

2) Sam Pittman - Arkansas Razorbacks

Sam Pittman is 23-25 in his head coaching career. He has considerable support from the Arkansas fanbase and the school. But at some point, he and the Hogs must win. That point is the 2024 season. After just four wins last season, Pittman will need at least six and possibly seven wins in 2024. If the number is six one must be against a top-tier SEC team.

3) Clark Lea - Vanderbilt Commodores

Lea's three-season head coaching record is 9-27. Even in Nashville, winning just 25% of games is unacceptable. After just two wins last season, Lea probably needs at least five wins in 2024 to keep his job. Sadly, for Lea and Vanderbilt, the problem in Nashville is greater than a head coaching deficiency.

4) Shane Beamer - South Carolina

After three South Carolina seasons, Shane Beamer's head coaching record is 20-18. Much promise was shown with an 8-5 record in 2022. The Gamecocks went backward last season, finishing 5-7. The best of the five wins was over Kentucky near the end of the season. Six wins appear to be the ceiling for South Carolina in 2024. That may not be enough.

There is an added strain of hot-seat affliction in the new 12-team Playoff era. Not making the Playoffs would not cost Lane Kiffin, Brian Kelly, Josh Heupel and Eli Drinkwitz their jobs. But failing to make the Playoffs in the 2025 season might.

Note: Coaching records provided by Sports Reference