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Saturday, December 6, 2014

Some Links and Thoughts on the OSU Coaching Search

Now that the news of Mike Riley's leaving OSU (for the second time) has settled a little, here are a few more links and thoughts about the coaching search.

First, most of my picks seem to be tossed around as possibilities by the media. What was I thinking with Steve Spurrier, though? South Carolina isn't going to fire him, and OSU isn't really a better destination for him. And of course, I mentioned Jim Harbraugh as a possibility (albeit a remote one), but  probably shouldn't have bothered, given that his alma mater is Michigan, who just happen to be in the market for a new head coach. I see that Brady Hoke and Beau Baldwin are both possibilities (or at least that some media outlets consider them as such), and Beau Baldwin is actually the fan favorite, at least according to one poll.

I had actually considered including Bronco Mendenhall as a possibility, but ruled him out since he is at arguably a better job right now. He would be a very good choice, and has some history coaching at OSU. I also overlooked Jonathan Smith, the rising star offensive coordinator at Washington--perhaps best known to Beaver Nation as our Fiesta Bowl season's quarterback. Matt Wells of Utah State and Tim DeRuyter of Fresno State are two other head coaches from the second-tier that I considered but skipped over initially--but they both seem to be on others' shortlists, so there's that.

One thing which kind of surprises me is how few of these lists are including Ed Orgeron--though I did notice that Ted Miller of ESPN suggested him as a possibility. I'm also surprised that virtually no one is listing Mark Banker as a possibility--is Mike Riley taking him to Nebraska and I just missed it? Actually, the defensive and/or offensive coordinators which I am consistently seeing suggested are from UCLA (Mazzone), ASU (Norvell), and USC (Wilcox), plus Oregon's Scott Frost.

I still think that Ed Orgeron would be the best available choice if he can coach like he did at USC. Brady Hoke, Beau Baldwin, or Bronco Mendenhall would all be pretty good choices as well. I think Dennis Erickson (mentioned on a few of the linked lists), Jeff Tedford, and Rick Neuheisel (I'm pretty sure I've seen his name floated somewhere) would all be mistakes, Wells is probably the best mid-major, Frost is probably the best choice of the coordinators, and Jonathan Smith would be the most interesting gamble. Who knows who's actually on Bob de Carolis' list, though?

Update: Woah, didn't see that one coming. And in addition, the beavers not only poach Wisconsin's head coach, they get a $42 million facilities upgrade to go with it. The future suddenly looks bright at OSU.

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