In 2007, Al Groh won the ACC coach of the year while at Virginia. That season his team won 9 games, 5 of which were won by less than three points. Two years later, he was fired after a "disappointing season." The University paid him over 2 million a year for the next two years "to not be their coach." He also found employment immediately when he became the defensive coordinator at Georgia Tech.
Last year the University of Central Florida (UCF) won the Conference USA 2010 title and the Liberty Bowl. This year UCF has lost 6 games by seven points or less, including a pair of losses by two points or less. The coach still has 4 years left on his most recent contract extension. Everyone is calling for the coach to be fired.
The difference between a good/great season and a disappointing season is often not much. Injuries, a missed field goal, a lost fumble and sometimes just bad karma can change a team’s fortune quickly.
Alumni and University Administrators need to accept the good with the bad, as long as you are fielding competitive teams and as long as you are running a "clean program."
Either that or stop giving the coaches such long term contracts (the golden parachutes). It just gets too expensive to keep giving coaches extensions on their contracts, sometimes after one good season, when the win-loss percentage can change so quickly.