6. Lou Holtz (Jets)
Holtz made a name for himself as an up-and-coming football coach after four successful seasons with North Carolina State. This led him to make the jump to the pros to coach the New York Jets in 1976. Taking over a 3-11 team, Holtz knew the task ahead of him would not be easy. Hopes were high, but Holtz would only promise that the team would “move the ball.” He lowered expectations even lower when he went on to say, “I hope to God it’s forward.”
From the start of his tenure, Holtz seemed out of place in the NFL. He would line his players up by size during the national anthem, and even wrote a team fight song that none of the players wanted to sing. To make matters even worse, the team wasn’t very good. Holtz soon realized he wasn’t meant to be an NFL coach. He quit with one game left in the season after leading the team to just a 3-10 record. Holtz was the first to admit that he blew his chance in the NFL, saying, “God did not put Lou Holtz on this earth to coach in the pros.” Recently, Holtz admitted that he was fired by the Jets ownership after he told them he planned to step down at the end of the season.
He took the head coaching job at Arkansas the following season, and went on to lead a Hall of Fame career as a college coach.