David Cobb of CBS Sports totally nailed his ranking of USC Football Head Coach Lincoln Riley in his 'Pac-12 Coach Rankings 2022.' He ranked Riley as the top coach in the conference, and for great reason.
Cobb made it clear that going 55-10 with three College Football Playoff appearances in his five years of head coaching speaks for itself. The next-best coach in the rankings is Kyle Whittingham, who has never made the College Football Playoff despite being a head coach for every single one of them.
Whittingham's 144-70 record doesn't even come into the same stratosphere as Riley's 55-10. Riley also has four Power 5 conference championships. Whittingham has just one despite 12 more years of head coaching than Riley.
USC Football HC Lincoln Riley has finished in the top ten every single season of his career.
Unlike USC football's Lincoln Riley, Whittingham has only accomplished that once--and it was 14 years ago. The only thing that Whittingham has going for him if he wants to be No. 1 on this list is that Riley hasn't coached a game in the Pac-12 yet, but that's silly.
Should Cobb just rank Riley as No. 2 for now and then as soon as Week 1 vs. Rice starts, update the list and put Riley at No. 1? Absolutely not--that's just ridiculous. Besides, Whittingham's best coaching job wasn't even in the Pac-12. It was in the Mountain West, where he finished second in the country with a Sugar Bowl win.
The closest Whittingham has come to that success in a Power Five conference was a four-loss season last year. Riley has never had a four-loss season in his entire career. He's never even had a three-loss season in his entire career.
In fact, Riley's worst season was this past year. And again, Whittingham's best Pac-12 season was this past year. Riley still finished top ten in the country. Whittingham finished just 12th. There's no comparison. Riley is the best coach and needs to be ranked as so. Cobb most certainly nailed this ranking.