Typically, the ACC's football coaches arrive at the conference's media days in polos and slacks and look like they didn't put a ton of effort into it all as a group. We took them to task last season by ranking how well those slacks fit. You don't need to be in amazing shape to buy pants that fit you, so Larry Fedora doesn't get some sort of built in advantage here.
This year, the coaches (and players) arrived in suits, which made the job a bit harder. But you can usually tell if a suit fits reasonably well by the slacks (at least in my book). So we'll be using those as the measure once again. Ahem:
Can Your Coach Buy a Proper Pair of Slacks?
The photos we're judging everyone off of is below. Best to blow these up a bit to really get a read on them. Rankings are directly below.
1. Mark Richt, Miami (LY: NR): This is not Richt's first rodeo, despite the former Georgia coach being one of the ACC's newcomers. SEC money buys quality clothing, specifically suits, and it shows as Richt is well put together, stately and wears pants that fit. The shoes are nothing to brag about compared to everyone else's. Overall, though, he looks the part of successful coach in the state of Florida.
2. Jimbo Fisher, Florida State (LY: 13): In 2015, Fisher went with a sloppy wide-leg khaki that was unflattering. This year, he ups his game with a solid black suit and a pleat that actually works here. Extra points for also wearing a paisley tie while everyone else goes a more conservative route. Fisher's dressed like someone aiming to win the conference.
3. Dave Clawson, Wake Forest (LY: 8): Clawson jumps with a similar suit to Fisher's. Black suit with a pleat that seems to work out. No bunching at the bottom. Cuffing, if it's there, isn't overly apparent or visible either. It's a modest step up from 2015 when he finished middle of the pack in a lighter tan slack.
4. Bronco Mendenhall, Virginia (LY: NR): Again, the all-black works. Pleat isn't overstated for Mendenhall's suit, and even with the jacket staying buttoned, it's not buckling anywhere either. Pants are definitely right length, a problem that will plague many coaches further down on the list. That's a shame.
5. Dino Babers, Syracuse (LY: NR): The black suit was the way to go for Babers, looking well put together while also repping the Orange using his tie. While Scott Shafer finished a high third last year, the bar was also lower around the league. Babers stepped into the ring with better-fashioned coaches and succeeds with minimal pleat and proper pant length.
6. Larry Fedora, North Carolina (LY: 1): On the one hand, Larry didn't go with pleats and his pants probably fit better than most. On the other: YOU DIDN'T WEAR (LONG) SOCKS, YOU ANIMAL. Sorry, points off for the "bro's yacht day out" look, though not enough to knock him out of the league's top half.
7. Paul Johnson, Georgia Tech (LY: 11): Johnson shows improvement, with less excess fabric and more of a standard-fit suit. What's better this time around is -- "Go back to your mom's basement, you wannabe food critic. This ain't Home Shopping Network." - Coach Johnson
8. Dave Doeren, NC State (LY: 9): For the second straight year, Doeren falls victim to excess fabric in the pant leg. Still, the all-black at least helps slim that look out a bit, and keep him close to the middle of the pack (pun intended) yet again. He could do much worse, after all.
9. Bobby Petrino, Louisville (LY: 4): Maybe it's the jacket pulling. Or perhaps the lack of pleats actually hurt the black slacks here. I just feel like the slacks aren't long enough here, and that's how he gets put just behind Johnson and Doeren. I'd accept arguments for him to be listed ahead of them.
10. Pat Narduzzi, Pittsburgh (LY: 12): Pleats create an image of a bit too much fabric in the leg, but I'm not sure the length is right, even with the excess. Narduzzi wears the suit well enough, however, and actually moves up from last year despite stiffer competition.
11. Steve Addazio, Boston College (LY: 6): There's a major gap between Petrino and Addazio just two spots later. Tons of fabric here, and the blue with pleats make that look worse. One advantage over the coaches below him, however: the lack of cuff at the bottom doesn't exacerbate the excess fabric even further.
12. David Cutcliffe, Duke (LY: 5): Aggressive four-button suit. We've got bunching, pleats and pants that definitely aren't long enough for what's needed. Cutcliffe was commended last year for outpacing many younger peers. This season, he's hurt a bit by some older suit sensibilities (yes I'm aware he's not as ancient as he seems).
13. Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech (LY: NR): Not a strong start for Fuente at his first ACC event. The low pleat on the light gray pants seems a bit weird, and there's likely a little too much fabric at the bottom of the slacks. They're almost bunching, which is odd for someone sitting in suit pants.
14. Dabo Swinney, Clemson (LY: 14): It's better than what he wore last year, for sure. But Dabo's still going a bit sloppy with wide-leg and everything. You can tell these pants are barely tailored and the light gray/pleat combination fails to do him any favors either. Clemson, he makes money and so do you. Give this man proper slacks.
As you can tell, as much as some things change, some things just stay the same. Dabo still can't dress himself compared to the rest of the conference, and it almost feels like it's on purpose. "Hey, all I need is wins and dancing... pants are for you squares."
Have any #HOTSLACKSTAKES of your own? Share them below.