With spring football beginning on campuses around the country this month, six 30-something coaches are getting their first crack at running a program. That doesn't include Willie Taggart - he'll be 37 when South Florida kicks off next fall and it will be head coaching job No. 2 for him.
It seems that when schools are searching for a leader these days, they are more willing to trust somebody young.
''If you're great at your job, it's only fair that you move up quickly,'' said Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury, who was 33 when he was hired by his alma mater in December.
Hiring a coach who still looks a lot like his college yearbook photo has happened in the past. Bear Bryant was 31 when he got his first job at Maryland in 1944. But in recent years it's become more common.
When Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald was hired to be the head coach at his alma mater in 2006, after Randy Walker had died of a heart attack, he was 31 years old. That made him the youngest coach in major colleg...