Winning Headwear: A Meta-Analysis of 2013 Top-25 Head Coaches

If you’ve met me on Twitter, there’s a 110% chance that you’ve seen me make a disparaging [albeit thoroughly accurate] comment about people, specifically head coaches, wearing visors. I loathe visors with every fiber of my being. Are you a golfer? Do you play tennis? No? Then have some self-respect, man! To me, a visor is the headwear equivalent of sagging your pants below your crack, having a full face tattoo, and claiming you were a Cleveland Browns fan prior to May 2014. Why? Because. I. Just. Can’t. Take. You. Seriously.

Head coaches are revered in this country; put on pedestals as treasured members of society. A great head coach is someone who can lead like Winston Churchill, motivate like Martin Luther King, Jr., and command respect like Derek Jeter (#jeteration). And honestly, how can you be any of those things when you’re wearing the equivalent of a tramp stamp on your noggin for the whole world to see?

A visor is basically a thong for your head.

I’ve been preaching the gospel of no-visors for the last five years now, so I wanted to find out if there was anything more to this than having THE WORST EVER judgment/fashion sense. Let’s get all science-y and junk (or junk science-y, if we’re being honest). So I took a look at the 2013 final BCS rankings and categorized each head coach based on his primary* headwear: hat, visor, or none. I was tempted to create a “sweet flattop” category, but that would just be Todd Graham all by himself. Anyway, I was curious to see how many Top-25 head coaches would fall in each category so I could justify drawing wildly inaccurate conclusions based on my own visor-hating agenda. As a result of this highly scientific inquiry, I can conclude:

–        Only seven out of 25 head coaches were visor-wearers

–        Only one of the top seven teams was coached by a visor-wearer

–        Visors are the worst thing to happen to mankind since the Great Plague

So let that be a lesson to you: if you want to coach a successful college football team, don’t wear a visor. Just don’t. You are the figurehead of the organization, an example to your coaching staff and impressionable young players, and a role model to the community at large. Please, for the love of Woody Hayes, don’t do it. We all have choices in this life; choose a regular hat or nothing at all because the success of your team depends on it. So this fall when you lead your team out onto the field in front of a sell-out crowd, lead with your head held high, unimpeded by a flaccid strap of material secured by Velcro.

Rank Team Head Coach Primary Headwear
1 Florida State Jimbo Fisher Hat
2 Auburn Gus Malzahn Visor
3 Alabama Nick Saban None
4 Michigan State Mark Dantonio None
5 Stanford David Shaw None
6 Baylor Art Briles Hat
7 Ohio State Urban Meyer None
8 Missouri Gary Pinkel Visor
9 South Carolina Steve Spurrier Visor
10 Oregon Mark Helfrich Hat
11 Oklahoma Bob Stoops Visor
12 Clemson Dabo Swinney None
13 Oklahoma State Mike Gundy None
14 Arizona State Todd Graham None
15 UCF George O’Leary None
16 LSU Les Miles Hat
17 UCLA Jim Mora Jr. Hat
18 Louisville Charlie Strong None
19 Wisconsin Gary Andersen Visor
20 Fresno State Tim DeRuyter Visor
21 Texas A&M Kevin Sumlin Visor
22 Georgia Mark Richt None
23 Northern Illinois Rod Carey Hat
24 Duke David Cutcliffe Hat
25 USC Ed Orgeron^ None

* Primary headwear = my own knowledge combined with the majority of the first 15 on-field pictures on Google images.

^ Yes, visor-wearing weapon of mass destruction Lane Kiffin headed this team for part of the year, but let’s be real, Ed Orgeron (no headwear) is the reason they’re even on this list.

 

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