Jerry Jones likes Lincoln Riley, Matt Rhule but has one big problem with college coaches

Stefan Stevenson, Fort Worth Star-Telegram on

Published in Football

Jerry Jones liked the head coaching he saw last week at AT&T Stadium.

Specifically, Oklahoma's Lincoln Riley and Baylor's Matt Rhule in the Big 12 Conference championship game.

But the Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager is not so sure a coach straight from the college level is the way to go for an NFL team.

"I am impressed with (Riley), but, boy, I am impressed with Baylor's Rhule, too," Jones said on KRLD/105.3 FM "The Fan" Friday morning. 'Those are two outstanding coaches at the stadium this weekend. That's just that. They've done great jobs. They've positioned their teams. They're sound in the way they're approaching their games. So, that was a great chance to see a couple of great coaches out there."

But Jones quickly pointed out that coaches moving directly from the college ranks to the NFL "have the lowest percentage rate of success" compared with those coaches who were first NFL coordinators.

"It's pretty obvious they have to get acquainted with personnel," Jones said. "College coaches spend Sunday working. It's one of their biggest work days of the week. And, so, in many cases they're not familiar with the personnel. Now, that's a big deal because there are coaches that understand almost the practice habit of opposing teams."

He added that their lack of NFL knowledge prevents them from "any input that you want from them regarding personnel."


"So you pay a price for somebody to get up to date that hasn't spent the prior months or years in the NFL," he said. "And then just the nature of the game and, again, college coaches don't spend a lot of time watching this game. They work on Sunday hard. And, so, getting up to snuff (takes time). I'm reminded that we won one football game the first year that we came and brought Jimmy in."

The Cowboys went 1-15 after Jerry replaced Tom Landry with Jimmy Johnson in 1989. Johnson came from the University of Miami.

Cowboys' coach Jason Garrett has been under fire since the team has lost three consecutive games.

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