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Grading college football's new coaching hires across the country

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Is Josh Heupel the answer for Tennessee? (1:31)

Chris Low breaks down Josh Heupel being hired as the next head football coach for Tennessee. (1:31)

As an adjunct professor at DePaul University (go Blue Demons!), I always review my class rosters with a hint of trepidation. I love teaching and enjoy the students (most of them, anyway), but more of them equals more grading for me.

This year's college football coaching carousel is a lot like a class with a bunch of prerequisites and a hard cap. Not everyone could enroll, even if they really, really wanted to. The number of changes is lower than normal, mainly because of the coronavirus pandemic and its financial impact.

As a result, I have fewer grades to pass out this year. Instead of grading 20 to 30 hires, like last year, the number will be much lower.

The hires may lack sizzle but could end up being very smart. A reminder: I'm always hesitant to pass out extremely low grades before a coach has a chance to upgrade his new program. The lower grades here are more about the appeal of the job or the process that led to the hire than the new coach himself.

Here are my coaching-hire grades, which will continue to be updated during the coming weeks: