Trophy Wives? Meet Trophy Coordinators

As 2008 dawned south of the Mason-Dixon line, Phillip Fulmer of Tennessee and Tommy Tuberville of Auburn were the two longest tenured coaches in the SEC. Between the two, they had a combined 25 seasons at their current schools, 227 wins, two undefeated seasons, and three SEC titles. They also had something else in common, shiny new offensive coordinators who brought shiny new offensive systems to towns that had long played the same brand of football.

Dave Clawson, a boyish 42-year-old former head coach from Richmond, and Tony Franklin, a wonkish offensive coordinator from Troy University, whose spread offense helped lead the Trojans to back-to-back Sun Belt titles. Both men arrived amid much acclaim. And why wouldn’t they? After all, they were the newest toys in a college football coach’s toy chest.