The level of talent in the college football coaching world has never been higher. As the bar keeps rising, it gets harder and harder for elite coaches to really stand out from the crowd…but these five guys have all proven themselves as the cream of the crop going into next season:
"The Mad Hatter" is known for his gambling coaching style, but he's turned LSU into one of the most consistent programs in the country over the past decade. Miles has posted a 103-29 record since taking over in Baton Rouge, and won a national championship in 2007.
However, his biggest impact is seen by LSU's record against the other great teams they play. The Tigers are 39-21 against ranked teams under Miles, including 15-16 against top 10 teams - a winning percentage that's the best in the nation by far. LSU's star dimmed a bit last year with a 8-5 record, but the Tigers are poised to compete for the SEC title again in 2015.
Patterson turned the Horned Frogs into a consistent BCS buster during their time in the Mountain West, and after just three seasons in the Big 12, TCU has successful dispelled all notions that they would struggle in one of the Power 5 Conferences.
He's gone 132-45 since taking over the head coaching job in Fort Worth in 2000, and has won six championships in three difference conferences and two BCS-level bowls (2010 Rose Bowl, 2015 Peach Bowl). TCU enters 2015 as a legitimate national championship favorite thanks to Patterson.
Fisher took over in Tallahassee in 2010 following the Bobby Bowden's retirement, and his Seminoles have gone 58-11 (with a 4-1 record in bowl games) - including the remarkable 29-game win streak that was snapped in their College Football Playoff loss to Oregon.
Fisher’s 2014 squad didn’t bulldoze through the competition like last year’s team, but they still consistently found ways to win, even with the odds stacked against them – that eyes-on-the-prize mentality has become Fisher’s hallmark. His status among the coaching elite will be tested in 2015 as they try to move on from quarterback Jameis Winston.
The only member of this list to take three schools in three different conferences to a Top-5 finish, Meyer boasts a dizzying 142-26 overall record with three national championship rings – two from his time at Florida, and one at Ohio State.
Ohio State has a perfect 24-0 record in the Big Ten since Meyer came to Columbus in 2012, and that’s no accident – whether he’s on the recruiting trail, in the film room or pacing the sideline, Meyer has demanded excellence at every stop along the way.
Love him or hate him, you have no choice but to respect him. Saban has reveled in his role as THE villain of college football over the last half-decade, and his “evil empire” at Alabama is only the most successful team since Tom Osborne’s mid-90′s Nebraska dynasty.
A ruthless perfectionist who holds his team to the highest standard, Saban has won four national championships since 2000, and was an easy pick for the #1 spot – though Meyer is certainly threatening.
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