JOHN L. PITTS: Success in football is relative




Mack Brown, a football coach who brought a national championship to Texas, just got basically run off from his job for posting an 8-4 record this season.

James Franklin guided Vanderbilt to an 8-4 finish and he’s getting talked up as The Next Big Thing in college football, maybe even the next coach at Texas.

Mark Richt’s Georgia team finished 8-4 and you’ll hear plenty during the offseason about what a terrible season it was for the Bulldogs and how Richt is back on the proverbial hot seat in 2014.

Steve Sarkisian led Washington to an 8-4 record and cashed in by leaving Seattle to be head coach at Southern Cal – where a four-loss regular season was seen as a massive failure.

The new head coach at Washington, Chris Petersen, just finished his worst season at Boise State, seen as a sign that the magic has left the Broncos. Yep, 8-4.

Clearly, not every 8-4 season is made equally.

As Albert Einstein demonstrated, what you see often depends on where you’re standing. Winning eight games at Buffalo this season after four straight losing seasons is a different kettle of fish than doing the same at Nebraska, which has won 48 games over the past five seasons.

Ole Miss will be aiming to reach eight wins with a bowl victory, a one-game improvement over Hugh Freeze’s first season. Mississippi State fans would probably take the promise of an eight-win season in 2014 right now.

Southern Miss fans have recently seen 12-win and 12-loss seasons, back to back. Next season, they might be happy to split the difference.

But 8-4 would be nice, too.

Random thoughts

• Charlie Partridge is the new head coach at Florida Atlantic. Will he drive the Partridge family bus all the way there from Arkansas? Will the band go with him? Does he get a pear tree at his new job? Inquiring minds want to know.

• They’re going to reboot the “Naked Gun” movie series? Surely you jest. And don’t call me Shirley.

• It cost the New York Mets $20 million to get a new Colon. Health care reform obviously isn’t working as planned.

John L. Pitts ( is sports editor of the Daily Journal.

Click video to hear audio