Grading college football head-coach hires: From Deion to Dilfer

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The college football coaching carousel has reached its second and more exciting phase: hiring season.

Positions are beginning to fill in the Power 5, starting with Nebraska and Arizona State immediately after the regular season. Every new hire comes with a degree of hope but also plenty to analyze. Recent coaching cycles have shown that some can't-miss hires will miss, and that less-celebrated coaches have been exactly what certain programs needed.

We are here to break down the most notable new hires: how coaches fit, the challenges they will face and more. We also will supply an initial grade. This file will be updated throughout the coaching carousel.

Jump to a new hire:
Walters to PUR | Taylor to STA
Brohm to LOU | Satterfield to CIN
Sanders to COL | Dilfer to UAB
Key to GT | Freeze to AUB
Fickell to WIS | Rhule to NEB
Dillingham to ASU

Ryan Walters to Purdue

Why is this a good fit?

Adam Rittenberg: Walters is ready to lead a program. I spent time with him before the season and again during the season, and I could see his natural leadership skills. Although he didn't spend time in the Big Ten before Illinois, his last two seasons under Bret Bielema have helped him get familiar with the league, and develop the leadership skills needed for this opportunity. Walters likely would have been the choice at Colorado if not for Deion Sanders, and had impressed several schools in interviews this cycle. He should energize Purdue's recruiting efforts, although his staff -- both on the field and in support roles -- will be very important to keep the program's momentum after its first Big Ten West Division title.