On a day known throughout the college football world as "Black Sunday" for its bevy of firings, staffs of Big Ten teams were hardly immune.
Kyle Flood was fired as the head coach of Rutgers on Sunday, and there is still a head-coaching vacancy at Maryland. But several Big Ten assistants had to start new job searches, too.
Purdue made the most dramatic staff changes without removing a head coach, with Darrell Hazell announcing that both offensive coordinator John Shoop and defensive coordinator Greg Hudson, as well as defensive tackles coach Rubin Carter, wouldn't be back for the 2016 season.
Hazell's tenure in West Lafayette, now three years deep, has seen very few wins. The Boilermakers went just 6-30 in Hazell's first three seasons, posting a hideous 2-22 mark in conference play. This season ended with a 2-10 mark after Saturday's season-ending loss to Indiana.
His assistants paid the price for all that losing Sunday. Shoop was criticized all season despite slightly improving on last season's offensive production. The Boilers ranked ninth in the Big Ten with 25.1 points per game, up from 11th last year, when they averaged 23.8 points per game. This season, Purdue averaged 368.6 total yards per game after averaging 344.6 yards per game last season. The defensive numbers, though, were slightly worse this season compared to last. The Boilers allowed an average of 36.5 points per game this year after allowing an average of 31.7 points per game last year. This season, the Boilers allowed an average of 458.3 total yards per game after allowing an average of 416 yards a season ago.
“I appreciate the efforts of each of those guys over the last three years,” Hazell said in the program's announcement. “They are quality men who are well respected by their players and their peers, and I am disappointed that things didn’t work out better. But I believe that in order to turn around this program, we need to make some significant changes and move in a different direction at those positions.”
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Elsewhere in the conference, Penn State announced that offensive coordinator John Donovan has been relieved of his duties.
The Nittany Lions finished 11th in the conference in scoring offense, averaging 23.7 points per game, and 13th in total offense, averaging 344 total yards per game. Penn State ranked 12th in rushing offense, ninth in passing offense, last in third-down conversions and gave up more sacks than any other Big Ten team.
Nowhere was the lack of effectiveness on Penn State's offense more glaring than the performance of quarterback Christian Hackenberg since James Franklin and his staff took over for Bill O'Brien. Hackenberg had a sensational freshman season under O'Brien, throwing 20 touchdown passes and for nearly 3,000 yards. After O'Brien departed to become the head coach of the Houston Texans, though, Hackenberg struggled. He threw 12 touchdowns compared to 15 interceptions last season. And while he only threw five picks this season, he threw for a career-low 2,386 yards.
The Nittany Lions finished their season at 7-5 after Saturday's blowout loss to Michigan State.
“I have tremendous respect for John and the work he has put in over the last five years,” Franklin said in the program's announcement. “I wish him and his family nothing but the best in the future.”