TCU offensive coordinator, Doug Meacham, has reportedly been named one of the two finalists for the North Texas head coach position. With the announcement rapidly approaching, Mean Green fans should get to know Meacham and quickly.
Meacham has been with TCU as the offensive coordinator since the 2014 season. In his first season calling the plays for the Horned Frogs, their offense improved by 188 yards per game and 21 points per game. The scoring improvement was so large that it broke the Big 12 record for most points per game improvement. Meacham finished the 2014 season as a finalist for Broyles Award, an award given to the top assistant coach in the nation.
Prior to TCU, Meacham spent a year as the offensive coordinator and QB coach at Houston. His stint at Houston followed seven seasons as the tight end and wide receivers coach for Oklahoma State, his alma mater. While at Oklahoma State, Meacham helped lead the Cowboy's offense to a top 20 ranking from 2006-2007 and 2009-2012. During the span of 2007-2012, his offense averaged 40 or more points. His work directly with the receiving corps helped the development of players such as Justin Blackmon and Dez Bryant.
Before finding himself back at his alma mater, Meacham was the offensive coordinator for four different teams between 1991 and 2004. His last position before moving to Oklahoma State was with Samford as OC. During the 2003 season, under Meacham's supervision, the Samford offense set school records in passing yards, completion percentage, and completed passes.
Let's be very straight forward here. North Texas is ranked 115th in total offense. They are averaging only 330.5 yards a game. Through 11 games, the offense has gathered 12 passing touchdowns and 10 interceptions. The rushing offense has shown promise with sophomore backs Willie Ivery and Jeffrey Wilson but still has only managed 7 touchdowns all season. In terms of scoring, the Mean Green offense is ranked fifth to last with an average of 15 points a game. Improving should not be too difficult of a task after the way this season has turned out. At the risk of sounding too optimistic, every offense that Meacham has worked with improved almost immediately after he joined the staff.
Player turnover was one of the largest issues coming into this season for North Texas. The Mean Green lost four starting offensive linemen, a starting running back and their second highest gaining receiver. Next season the team will return both of their leading rushers, quarterback DaMarcus Smith, and numerous linemen that saw action on the field this season. The largest area that will be affected by turnover is in the receiving corps with the teams top receivers in Carlos Harris and Marcus Smith graduating. However, with 10 of 16 receivers on the current roster returning, Meacham should have the chance to develop a young group of receivers into weapons for whoever he names as starting quarterback.
In case you aren't aware of the numerous reasons why North Texas is a desirable destination, North Texas isn't the only party to benefit from this situation. Meacham currently makes $350,000 at TCU. Although there's no official number, it's not crazy to think that his salary could double if Meacham was to take the North Texas position. If money wasn't a big enough factor, the location couldn't be better. Fort Worth is less than an hour away from Denton. Taking the position in Denton would mean that Meacham would not have to relocate his family or go through much of a lifestyle change at all. In theory, a 100% pay raise for a head coaching position that is just slightly further than your current job sounds like an excellent situation for anyone.
Realistically there are only two drawbacks to Doug Meacham. The first and most obvious is a lack of head coaching experience. If chosen, this would be Meacham's first head coach position. He has, however, been in charge of offensive play calling at TCU since he started there in 2014. Although that does not fully prepare you for a position of this magnitude, his success at TCU is a promising sign that Meacham will be comfortable and prepared on the field.
Although I don't personally see this potentially being a major drawback, many have questioned if Meacham will be able to recruit the caliber of players that North Texas needs to rebuild. There's no evidence to prove that he will be able to recruit effectively, but there's also nothing necessarily saying that he won't be able to. In my opinion, this man's resume looks incredible and speaks for itself. If I'm a high school recruit, there's a good chance that I want to play for the man who has led consistent national leading offenses.