When Oregon decided Tuesday night to fire head coach Mark Helfrich after their disastrous season, it took only a little while for all of the names of who might be interested in going to Eugene, to start circulating.
Now, one thing that you have to understand, these coaches have their agents and other third parties who WANT their client’s names out there. So, often times, they are the actual source of what you are seeing on TV, the internet and hearing on radio about “interest” and “on the short list,” etc.
With that being said, we have stay current on the “coaching carousel” and when it involves the prominent big schools and their head honchos, then we write and update.
First, Gators coach Jim McElwain, who is preparing for the SEC Championship Game vs. Alabama Saturday was questioned directly about the Oregon opening today and gave the cryptic answers you would expect:
— John Sabol (@John_Sabol) December 1, 2016
In case you weren’t watching and listening for it, you didn’t hear “I am not interested, I am not taking any other jobs, I am only going to coach at Florida,” or anything similar. You heard “They haven’t contacted ME (they wouldn’t) and “it hasn’t crossed my mind” (cryptic coach speak for: “Get back to me on that after Alabama likely clocks us Saturday.”)
We at F.F.I. don’t think the Oregon job is better than the Florida job. Plus, McElwain, who has tons of experience with the SEC and recruiting the South, has had success his first two years and built up capital for the next two-three years.
Next, we wrote weeks ago about USF Head Coach Willie Taggart and interest in him growing, as the Bulls continued to win. Well, they just finished their best regular season (10-2) in their 20 year existence and Wednesday, QB Quinton Flowers was named the AAC Offensive Player of the Year. Needless to say, Taggart is now a hot commodity.
And there are national plugged in college football writers who are circulating that there is interest:
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) November 30, 2016
And, there’s the “Strong Candidate” thing. But, Bruce Feldman is one of the top insiders and if he says there’s big time interest, then believe it. Bulls fans should further be nervous, that there are now, multiple sources and outlets saying he will get an interview and consideration. And sooner or later the right power five conference job will win out over what the Green and Gold has to keep him. USF fans should hope and pray that isn’t this year.
We also wrote three weeks ago that UCF’s Scott Frost (former Ducks OC) could be a possibility to be “one and done” and maybe return to Oregon. But that’s only speculation, especially when the Golden Knights were beaten decisively in the last two games to finish 6-6, and Oregon just had to fire Chip Kelly’s former offensive coordinator, Helrich, in the first place.
Ahhh, the carousel… It continues to spin.
We’ll keep watch listening and writing.