Five years ago, Arizona State made the rather stunning decision to hire former Jets head coach and, at the time, ESPN NFL analyst Herm Edwards as their head coach, promising a “new leadership model,” with Edwards acting as the CEO-type head coach overseeing the program.
Early returns were surprisingly positive, but recent years have been rather dreadful in Tempe, with the most recent result being a 30-21 home loss to Eastern Michigan in which the Eagles were the clearly better team on Saturday night. That was the final straw that sent Edwards packing from Arizona State for good, as was reported on Sunday evening (timed beautifully with the start of the Cardinals game).
BREAKING: Herm Edwards is out as ASU’s head football coach per two people familiar with the decision.
ASU staff member were told within the last hour that Edwards would no longer be the team’s coach.
Interim head coaching plans are not clear as yet.
— Chris Karpman (@ChrisKarpman) September 18, 2022
BREAKING Herm Edwards is out as head coach at ASU.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) September 18, 2022
Edwards leaves Arizona State with a 26-20 record, an NCAA recruiting scandal under his watch, and general uncertainty about where the program goes from here (despite never having a losing season until this 1-2 start). What comes next for Arizona State’s program is anyone’s guess, as they have plenty to figure out beyond just the head coach, but it’s not a job that’s impossible to succeed at and with uncertainty in the Pac-12 moving forward as USC and UCLA leave for the Big Ten, there’s plenty of reason to try and get this next hire right, right now.
The question is who will be the right fit and what their competition will be on the coaching market. We know Nebraska is looking to fill an opening and other Power Five programs will join them, with Auburn and Georgia Tech almost assuredly having vacancies during or after this season. Matt Rhule’s NFL tenure may come to an end and he’ll be a hot name, as would Kliff Kingsbury if the Cardinals continue to bottom out as he sits on the hot seat — and he wouldn’t even have to move to take over the Sun Devils.