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#pounditWednesday, January 19, 2022

Herm Edwards unlikely to return as Arizona State coach next season?

Herm Edwards

When Arizona State hired head coach Herm Edwards in December of 2017, expectations were sky high. After all, Edwards had a relatively successful career in the NFL and was beloved by players, fans and media alike.

However, things have not exactly gone according to plan. Edwards is a combined 23-16 over his three and a half seasons at ASU and their 6-3 record here in 2021 has fallen well short of their Pac-12 championship expectations. Edwards and ASU also find themselves under investigation for alleged recruiting violations during the 2020 pandemic.

Things have gotten so bad that Jordan Simone was even fired as the ASU radio reporter after calling for Edwards’ termination.

For all of those reasons an more, Edwards finds himself firmly on the hot seat. And Pete Thamel of Yahoo! Sports does not expect him to survive.

Thamel reports that those within the industry feel similarly, anticipating that Edwards will be out following the season.

The Sun Devils are under NCAA investigation and amid a season of promise that quickly fizzled. Industry expectation is that Herm Edwards won’t return as coach next season. The unwinding is never simple, as the NCAA findings in the case that alleges ASU blatantly broke COVID-19 protocols for a recruiting advantage won’t come anytime soon. That would mean if Edwards digs in, it could be tricky to fire him for cause. (Considering ASU hasn’t already.)

There’s a thicket of close relationships here — president Michael Crow has stuck with AD Ray Anderson through limited results and significant controversy. Anderson hired Edwards when no one wanted him to coach at any level, and Edwards’ tenure has careened to the lows many initially predicted. Any hopes of Edwards handing the program off to defensive coordinator Antonio Pierce are dashed. Would Edwards just retire?

Whether Edwards retires, resigns or is outright fired remains to be seen, but the odds that he’s back at ASU in 2022 is dwindling by the day.

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