Odds to be First College Coach Fired in 2019: USC’s Helton & Rutgers’ Ash Favored, Orgeron Given 14-1 Odds

  • You can wager on the first college football coach to be fired this season
  • USC's Clay Helton is on the hot seat after a 5-7 season in 2018
  • Is there value in betting on a longshot such as Ed Orgeron?

Week 1 of College Football is nearing and you can bet on which coach will be fired first this season.

USC's Clay Helton and Rutgers Chris Ash are the favorites after both programs had very disappointing years in 2018. LSU's Ed Orgeron is also listed in the top ten.

Here's how BetOnline sets up the odds.

First College Football Coach to be Fired

Coach Odds at
BetOnline
Chris Ash (Rutgers) +500
Clay Helton (USC) +550
Lovie Smith (Illinois) +900
Gus Malzahn (Auburn) +1000
Kalani Sitake (BYU) +1200
Ed Orgeron (LSU) +1400
Justin Fuente (Virginia Tech) +1400
Willie Taggart (FSU) +1600
Mike Gundy (Oklahoma State) +1600
Tom Allen (Indiana) +2000

*Odds taken 08/26/19

Clay Helton Already on the Hot Seat

Clay Helton is heading into his fourth season as coach of the Trojans, but he won't see a fifth year if things don't go well in 2019.

USC's disappointing 5-7 record in 2018 was their first losing season since 2000. The Trojans previously performed well under Helton in his first two years as coach (when he had Sam Darnold behind center), posting a 21-6 record and winning a Pac-12 Championship and a Rose Bowl.

Despite a potential rebound season being in store for the Trojans, the schedule is stacked against Helton and could lead him to getting canned. USC isn't on the same level as Washington, Oregon or Utah in the Pac-12 and the Trojans have to face some tough opponents in the first half of the season. Losses to Fresno State, Stanford, Utah and Washington early on could lead to Helton getting the boot.

I'm optimistic about the Trojans due to their elite wide receiving trio of Michael Pittman Jr, Tyler Vaughns, and Amon-Ra St. Brown. I also like the offseason addition of offensive coordinator Graham Harrell to lead USC's new-look Air Raid offensive attack.

Sophomore quarterback JT Daniels can save Helton's job with a breakout season, but that's not a certainty after the starting QB had an uneven freshman year in which he threw for 2,672 yards, 14 touchdowns and 10 interceptions with a 59.5 completion percentage.

There are reasons to be optimistic here, but those first six opponents on USC's schedule are daunting.

Chris Ash Also Favored at +500

According to BetOnline, Rutgers head coach Chris Ash has the best odds to be the first coach fired at +500.

The Scarlet Knights were an awful 1-11 in 2018 and hold a brutal 7-29 record in three years under Ash. They also finished dead last in scoring offense last year. If things don't improve in 2019, Ash is almost certainly getting the boot.

2019 College Football Conference Title Odds Tracker

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What Ash does have working for him is a buyout clause in his current contract that would see him get paid $7.5M by the university if the team were to fire him this season.

They just don't have the talent to matchup against the powerhouse teams in the Big Ten East, so any improvement or win in division should save Ash's job.

Quarterback Artur Sitkowski will be out to prove doubters wrong after throwing a nation-high 18 interceptions in 2018 as he battles with Texas Tech grad transfer McClane Carter for snaps, while the team must take advantage of winnable games over the first month of the year against UMass, Maryland and Indiana.

I think Ash could get fired at the end of this season, but in terms of choosing the first college football coach to be fired, I don't think Ash is a great bet at +500.

Does Ed Orgeron Have Value at +1400?

While LSU head coach Ed Orgeron is listed with +1400 odds to be the first college coach fired, he isn't on nearly as much of a hot seat as Helton.

The Tigers went 10-3 last season and beat UCF 40-32 at the Fiesta Bowl. LSU's National Championship odds quietly moved from +5000 to +3300 heading into Week 1.

I don't really see value in betting on Ed Orgeron being fired. The Tigers are returning seven regular starters on offense and six starters on defense. Quarterback Joe Burrow finished strong in his first season and will be more experienced heading into year two.

Former New Orleans Saints offensive assistant Joe Brady is LSU's new passing game coordinator, and he should help a revamped offense that includes talented players such as wide receiver Justin Jefferson and breakout candidates Terrace Marshall Jr. and Ja'Marr Chase.

Considering the Tigers put up the school's first 10-win season since 2013 last year, I don't like Coach Orgeron at +1400 odds to be fired. All the signs are pointing to LSU taking a positive step forward in 2019, and that should keep Orgeron's job safe.

Verdict

While there are some unlikely candidates on this list, it's hard to argue against Clay Helton being at the top.

The Trojans have a good chance to rebound this season with a great group of wide receivers and a promising quarterback in JT Daniels, but a very tough first-half schedule makes  Helton the best value bet as the first coach to be fired this season.

Pick: Clay Helton (+550)

The post Odds to be First College Coach Fired in 2019: USC's Helton & Rutgers' Ash Favored, Orgeron Given 14-1 Odds appeared first on Sports Betting Dime.

Original source: https://www.sportsbettingdime.com/news/ncaaf/first-ncaaf-coach-fired-2019/

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