by Jordan Grove
Tulane has fallen hard since the departure of Tommy Bowden. They went from 12-0 in 1998 to 2-10 in 2008. Bowden’s successors haven’t done diddly-poo with Chris Scelfo leading Tulane to their last bowl game and winning season in 2002.
Now, Bob Toledo is entering his 5th and most pivotal year as head coach of the Tulane Green Wave and has a lot to prove to be retained as coach.
In four years he has yet to win over 4 games in a season and hasn’t even sniffed a bowl game. He also has failed to win more than 3 games over FBS opponents and if he happened to win four games that year the fourth win came against FCS competition (McNeese St or Southeastern LA).
This year the schedule is favorable as the Green Wave should open the season with a “W” as they host the Southeastern Louisiana Lions, a Southland Conference team that should finish near the bottom of their conference. Also on tap for later in the year is UAB, Duke, Army, Memphis, and Rice.
UAB has struggled under head coach Neil Catthaway, Duke is consistently one of the worst football programs in the country, Memphis is a perennial Conference USA cellar-dweller as is Rice. Army could pull off the win since their program seems to be on the rise as they broke their bowl game drought last season.
It’s quite possible that Tulane could get to 6 wins this year if they beat all of the aforementioned teams which would be the first time the team has finished at .500 or better in 9 years.
There is hope for optimism as the team has improved under his watch and could have won more than four games last year had it not been for abysmally bad special teams play. If that can be corrected then the possibly is there for Toledo and Tulane to get about the four games won mark.
That’s all speculation, though. Toledo was on the hot seat last year but received an unexpected contract extension because the team showed some improvement. If the Green Wave regress in any form this year then they should more than likely be in the search for a new leader. But then the question is: who wants to coach at Tulane?