Florida Gators Head Coach Candidates

The Florida Gators head coach position is once again up for grabs. There are a few different types of head coach candidates the Florida Gators could go with. They could go with a power five head coach from a lower-end or mid-level school, a strong group of five head coach, a coordinator from a high-end power five school, a NFL assistant, or a retired head coach.

The rumor mill for this coaching hire has a variety of coaches, some of which should never be considered, while others should only be worst-case scenario hires, and some won’t even be interested.

Power Five Head Coaches

Good Hires

Potential Florida Gators Head Coach Dave Aranda
Photo by Orlin Wagner, Associated Press

Dave Aranda: Baylor, 2nd Season, 11-9 career, 9-2 season

Dave Aranda has done really well in his second season at Baylor. His first season they won just two games, but this year they have only lost twice, including beating Oklahoma.

Aranda has SEC experience, as he was the defensive coordinator at LSU for four years, including their National Championship season. Baylor’s recruiting class is ranked just five spots lower than Florida according to 247sports and eight spots higher according to Rivals.

Lane Kiffin: Ole Miss, 2nd Season, 10th overall season, 75-41 career, 14-7 @ Ole Miss, 9-2 season, 2 years in NFL, 5-15 record

Lane Kiffin has had a lot of success at four different stops in his career. He has shown the ability to succeed in the SEC, with a 7-6 year at Tennessee and also going 14-7 thus far at Ole Miss, including 9-2 this year. Kiffin currently has the 38th ranked recruiting class according to 247sports, after having the 17th ranked recruiting class the previous year.

Both of these are slightly below Florida’s rankings. While that does invite concern, the better quality of program could allow Kiffin to do better than he is at a mid-tier SEC program currently.

Mark Stoops: Kentucky, 9th Season, 57-53 career, 8-3 season

Under Mark Stoops, this Kentucky program has steadily climbed, and is currently sitting at 8-3 and 2nd place in the SEC East. They currently have 247sports 16th ranked recruiting class. Mark Stoops has been able to recruit at a consistent top 35 ranking for the past few years despite a relative lack of resources as compared to Florida.

Stoops has also proven himself to be a quality defensive mind, and could be the answer to fix that side of the ball that has struggled under Mullen except for 2019. Stoops is not a top choice, but should be on the long list.

Unlikely to Be Interested

Potential Florida Gators Head Coach Mario Cristobal
Photo by Gaelen Morse, Getty Images

Mario Cristobal: Oregon, 4th season, 10th overall season, 61-59 career, 34-12 @ Oregon, 9-2 season

Mario Cristobal would bring a lot of what the Florida program needs: offensive line competence and a great recruiter. Cristobal’s worst recruiting season was his first, where he finished 13th in the country.

For comparison, Mullen’s best seasons recruiting were 2019 and 2020, where he finished 9th both years. If they were able to get him, it would be a very good hire, but it would take a lot to pull him away from a good job with great facilities and a much easier path to the College Football Playoff. However, Cristobal does have a lot of roots in the south, and particularly Florida.

Cristobal played in college at Miami, was a graduate assistant there, and later a tight end and offensive line coach. He spent six seasons as FIU’s head coach, and before he went to be an assistant at Oregon, spent four years as an assistant head coach for Alabama.

Matt Campbell: Iowa State, 5th season, 9th overall season, 76-48 career, 41-33 @ Iowa State, 6-5 season

Iowa State has been a solid program under Campbell. However, he hasn’t had as much success as a lot of the other coaches in terms of recruiting, and that is a must for whoever Florida hires. He turned around a very bad program, but he just is not the best option for Florida.

James Franklin: Penn State, 8th season, 11th overall season, 91-47 career, 67-32 @ Penn State, 7-4 season

James Franklin has had a successful tenure at Penn State after having relative success at Vanderbilt. However, it looks like Franklin has peaked and can’t get over the hump that is Ohio State. He is a good recruiter, but just is not a very good game day manager. It’s hard not to feel that if he were to come to Florida, he wouldn’t face similar issues with Georgia as he does currently with Ohio State.

Worst-Case Scenario

Jeff Hafley: Boston College, 2nd season, 12-10 career, 6-5 season

Jeff Hafley has had moderate success given his circumstances, and was a quality assistant coach. However, he just does not have the experience or the track record to justify Florida hiring him.

Dave Clawson: Wake Forest, 8th season, 22nd overall season, 139-126 career, 49-47 @ Wake Forest, 9-2 season

Dave Clawson has been .500 or better at all four schools he has coached at. However, he has just barely hit that mark. While his teams have improved year-over-year and eventually hit their peak as a program, he just hasn’t shown the ability to recruit at a higher level. The best path to a high-end job would be to take a minor step up (say a Virginia Tech or Miami) and then prove himself there once again.

Group of Five Head Coaches

Potential Florida Gators Head Coach Billy Napier
Photo by Scott Wachter, USA Today Sports

Good Hire

Luke Fickell: Cincinnati, 5th season, 6th overall season 52-21 career, 46-14 @ Cincinnati, 11-0 season

Luke Fickell struggled in his one year as interim head coach at Ohio State, but after spending six additional seasons as the defensive coordinator there, he has turned around a Cincinnati program that was struggling to replace Brian Kelly. After going 4-8 his first season, they have won double digit games every year except for the COVID-shortened 2020 season where they only lost one game.

On top of that, they are currently undefeated and look to be in playoff contention. While he doesn’t have experience in this part of the country, he would still be a good hire.

Billy Napier: Louisiana, 4th season, 38-12 career, 10-1 season

Billy Napier looks to be the favorite in the clubhouse as the end of the season nears. Napier has been a very successful coach in his four years at Louisiana. He has had the top recruiting class in the Sun Belt the past three years. Prior to Louisiana, he spent a year as Arizona State’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, and before that was Alabama’s wide receivers coach for four years.

Not only has he been a great recruiter, but he has had offensive success at multiple schools. On top of this, he was able to change the way the program was built at Louisiana to help with recruiting due to a larger staff. He would be a great hire if they chose him.

Worst-Case Scenario

Jamey Chadwell: Coastal Carolina, 4th season (1 interim), 12th overall season, 88-54 career, 28-19 @ Coastal Carolina, 9-2 season

Chadwell has had mixed success over the years at multiple stops. As of late, Coastal Carolina has been successful and Chadwell has recruited well, including being projected to have the top recruiting class in the Sun Belt. However, inconsistencies and a lack of experience at a high level make it a very risky hire for anyone at a large program.

Power Five Assistants

The assistants will probably be discussed and possibly given a look, but it is very unlikely that Florida goes this route unless they miss out on several of their top options.

  • Mike Elko: 4th season as Texas A&M defensive coordinator, no head coaching experience
  • Bill O’Brien: 1st season as Alabama offensive coordinator, two seasons at Penn State, 15-9 career, seven seasons w/ Houston Texans, 52-48 career
  • Todd Monken: 2nd season as Georgia offensive coordinator, three seasons at Southern Miss, 13-25 career
  • Pete Golding: 3rd season as Alabama defensive coordinator, no head coaching experience
  • Dan Lanning: 3rd season as Georgia defensive coordinator, no head coaching experience
  • Holmon Wiggins: 3rd season as Alabama WR coach (1st as assistant head coach), no head coaching experience

NFL Assistants

Both NFL assistants with a background at Florida, it is unlikely that either of them wish to make a return to the college ranks. If one were to do it, Brian Johnson would be more likely, but probably not at Florida.

  • Dan Quinn: 1st season as Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator, six seasons as Atlanta Falcons head coach, 43-42 record
  • Brian Johnson: 1st season as Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks coach, no head coaching experience

Retired Coaches

  • Bob Stoops: 18 years as head coach at Oklahoma, 190-48 career record

Head Coach Hire Tiers

Tier One: Home Run Hires

Mario Cristobal: Head Coach, Oregon

Billy Napier: Head Coach, Louisiana

Luke Fickell: Head Coach, Cincinnati

Tier Two: Good Hires

Dave Aranda: Head Coach, Baylor

Lane Kiffin: Head Coach, Ole Miss

Tier Three: Decent Hires

Mark Stoops: Head Coach, Kentucky

Bob Stoops: Retired, Former Head Coach, Oklahoma

Tier Four: Shaky Hires

James Franklin: Head Coach, Penn State

Jamey Chadwell: Head Coach, Coastal Carolina

Dave Clawson: Head Coach, Wake Forest

Bill O’Brien: Offensive Coordinator, Alabama

Matt Campbell: Head Coach, Iowa State

Tier Five: Bad Hires

Jeff Hafley: Head Coach, Boston College

Dan Quinn: Defensive Coordinator, Dallas Cowboys

Mike Elko: Defensive Coordinator, Texas A&M

Todd Monken: Offensive Coordinator, Georgia

Pete Golding: Defensive Coordinator, Alabama

Dan Lanning: Defensive Coordinator, Georgia

Brian Johnson: Quarterbacks Coach, Philadelphia Eagles

Holmon Wiggins: Wide Receivers Coach, Alabama

Florida Gators vs South Carolina Gamecocks: Week 10 Preview

  • Date: November 6, 2021
  • Time: 7:30pm EST
  • Venue: Williams-Brice Stadium, Columbia, South Carolina
  • TV: SEC Network
  • Record: Gators (4-4) Gamecocks (4-4)
Gators vs Gamecocks
Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Week 9 Recap

Last week, Florida lost to Georgia 34-7. The Gators lack of offense was not a major surprise given the Bulldog’s elite defense. Anthony Richardson got the start, but left the game with an injury. He finished the day 12/20 for 82 yards and added 26 yards on the ground. Emory Jones finished the game, and completed 10 of 14 passes for 112 yards and added 22 yards on the ground. The running game was stifled as compared to normal weeks, averaging just 4.1 yards per carry. They still gained 161 yards rushing, but this was due to 39 carries as a team. Dameon Pierce was by far the best running back last week, gaining 69 yards on just 9 carries.

The defense played well all things considered. They gave up 161 yards through the air on 19 attempts and had two interceptions, both by Rashad Torrence II. They gave up 193 yards on the ground, which is another poor performance against the run, after a similar result against LSU. Trey Dean III led the team in both tackles and tackles for loss, with 8 tackles and the only tackle for loss, which was a sack.

What to Watch

Florida’s Front 7 Against the Run

Florida has struggled as of late stopping the run. The Gators linebacker core has been without Ventrell Miller for the entire season, but that has been the only major injury in the front seven. The defensive line is full of solid players that at times have each shined, yet recently this group has struggled to stop the run. South Carolina on the other hand, has struggled to run the ball, averaging just 3.4 yards per carry. This is a classic case of a stoppable force meeting a movable object.

Gators Receivers

The Gators have yet to really have any singular receiver pop to fill the voids of Kadarius Toney and Kyle Pitts. The leading receiver is Jacob Copeland, who has 25 catches for 450 yards. The yardage by him is solid, but nothing exceptional. Justin Shorter is second with 23 catches for 279 yards. No one else has over 200 yards.

Keys to Success

Quarterback Play

Quarterback play has been a big concern as of late. Anthony Richardson struggled in his limited action against Georgia. Emory Jones had been struggling in his last couple starts, and was mediocre against Georgia. Jones may start against the Gamecocks with Anthony Richardson recovering from a concussion. Jones on the year is 129/190 for 1417 yards and 10 touchdowns with 9 interceptions, and has added 517 yards and 3 touchdowns on the ground. South Carolina is not a good defense, so Jones has to have a great performance to prove he deserves to play the rest of the year. The Gators need to find consistent play out of one of them, and this may be Emory Jones’s last chance.

Turnover Margin

On the season, Florida is -7 in terms of turnover margin. This is 123rd in the country. They have forced 9 turnovers, 3 fumbles and 6 interceptions. They have turned the ball over 16 times. The Gators have only fumbled twice but have 14 interceptions. It is very difficult to win games when you are turning the ball over almost twice as much as opponents are. The interceptions have also often resulted in opponents’ touchdowns and have frequently occurred in clutch situations. The Gators desperately need to cut down on turnovers.

Pass Rush

Last week against Georgia, the Gators had just one sack and it was by a safety. The defensive front was unable to affect the game at all in any aspect. Florida should go out to an early lead, and to keep that lead an effective pass rush is a necessity. Brenton Cox Jr was extremely ineffective last week and has yet to have a big game this season. Zach Carter has been up and down, and those downs have occurred in the last few games. On the interior, Gervon Dexter has been solid but has not added a ton as a pass rusher. Daquan Newkirk and the rest of the defensive tackle group aren’t freak athletes or skilled pass rushers, so the burden falls on Dexter and the defensive ends.

Florida vs South Carolina Score Prediction

Gators 42 – Commodores 21

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College Football Playoff Predictions: Week 9

This Tuesday the College Football Playoff Committee will release their first rankings of the season. Today I will release my College Football Playoff predictions, with the four teams who will be in and four teams that just missed the cut. Grab yourself your favorite beer, cocktail, or a cup of coffee and let’s get angry about rankings!

Image via GettyImages, Joel Auerbach

College Football Playoff Predictions: The Four Teams In

1.) Georgia

This was the easiest decision to make. Georgia has been dominating everyone they have played with their elite defense. Their offense is not very explosive, but they rarely turn the ball over and have played good enough to keep pressure off of the defense.

Stetson Bennett has kept his turnovers to a minimum (four interceptions on the year), while allowing the running game to be the engine to this offense.

2.) Ohio State

Ohio State has arguably been the second best team in College Football this season with C.J. Stroud developing into a star signal caller and TreyVon Henderson finding his stride as arguably one of the best running backs in college football.

Ohio State’s offense has been incredible. However, their defense still raises some questions and could be the reason they aren’t raising the CFP National Championship Trophy in January.

3.) Alabama

Nick Saban just turned SEVENTY YEARS OLD and is still dominating college football. Bryce Young, the Heisman favorite right now, is leading the team as a redshirt freshman at Quarterback with playmakers Brian Robinson jr., John Metchie III, and Jameson Williams.

Alabama still has enough fire power to score on anyone even after sending five offensive playmakers and two quarterbacks to the NFL in the past two drafts. With a defense that still ranks in the Top-15 among FBS teams (according to NCAA.com).

Alabama might be the most well-rounded team in college football when all is said and done. Nick Saban is the greatest of all time.

4.) Oklahoma

Oklahoma was looking like a team destined to get upset a few times this season. However, they’ve pulled out the win on every occasion thus far. With the change to Freshman Quarterback Caleb Williams, Oklahoma’s offense looks more dynamic than ever.

This defense is littered with talent including: Nik Bonitto, Perrion Winfrey, and Isaiah Thomas on the defensive line. If Alex Grinch can get this defense to play to their potential, they will be an elite front seven come December and January.

College Football Playoff Predictions: The First Four Out

5.) Cincinnati

The Cincinnati Bearcats are going to be huge Notre Dame fans for the rest of the season. They came away from South Bend with a win earlier this year and so far it’s the only loss Notre Dame has had. Although Notre Dame has had some close calls to questionable programs this season, namely Florida State and Toledo, they still stand with a (7-1) record.

Cincinnati is headed by Luke Fickell, one of the hottest up-and-coming head coaches in college football at the moment. Fickell is a defensive mind, as he was a co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at Ohio State before taking the Cincinnati job.

The Bearcats are also littered with talent on their roster, especially at premium positions. Headlined by Desmond Ridder at quarterback, a potential first round pick next April. Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner is a shut down cornerback, currently having an elite-level season. Myjai Sanders is another high-impact defender for the Bearcats. However, he is currently sitting with a pedestrian one sack on the season.

I believe the College Football Playoff Committee will leave Cincinnati out of the Top-4 for the time being. This committee will do anything they can to keep a non-Power Five school from being in the playoffs. The reason is money. Keeping all of the College Football Playoff money within the Power Five conferences is good business. Spreading it to another conference — is not.

I hear the arguments for Cincinnati “deserving” to be in the playoffs because they’re undefeated, they beat a blue blood program on the road, they’ve done everything they could thus far. I just do not think they’re one of the four best teams in college football.

6.) Michigan State

After a huge win against rival Michigan in East Lansing, Michigan State is the last remaining un-beaten team in the Big Ten.

Mel Tucker has crafted an incredible bend-but-don’t-break defense, allowing over 420 yards per game but only 20.5 points per game.

Kenneth Walker Jr. is having one of the best seasons a running back has had since Derrick Henry won the Heisman in 2015. Accumulating 1,194 yards and 14 touchdowns in eight games.

7.) Michigan

With a loss to Michigan State, the Wolverines chances at a College Football Playoff looks slim. However, a big win against Ohio State and Michigan State dropping two games with Ohio State and Penn State still on their schedule, still gives Michigan fans some hope of finally making a playoff.

8.) Oregon

With their win against Ohio State fading more and more into the rear view mirror, Oregon must stay focused and win-out in a bad PAC-12. The loss to Stanford has probably already sunk their chances of making a playoff. A scenario to get them in could entail Ohio State losing one more game to Michigan State or in the Big Ten title game. Alabama and Oklahoma would both have to lose their Conference Title Games as well for Oregon to have any chance at making the playoffs this season.

Closing

This College Football Playoffs prediction is hardly set in stone and completely fluid. As of right now, this is who I would have in the playoffs and who I would have on the outside.

Please make sure to comment and tell me who YOU would have in your College Football Playoff prediction. Peace!


Follow Me on Twitter: @ryfootballscout

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Tennessee vs Ole Miss: Vols lose bizarre game at home 26-31

Tennessee vs Ole Miss
Photo Courtesy of Vol Football on Twitter.

The Tennessee fan base showed up and showed out in a sold out Neyland Stadium vs Ole Miss. The fans produced a season-high 115.6 decibel rating during a pivotal third down late in the fourth quarter. Regardless of a checkered Neyland Stadium, the hometown Vols lost to the #13 ranked Rebels 31-26 on multiple questionable calls. It was clear to see the frustration on everyone.

The Scoop n’ score that never was.

Let’s begin in the middle of the first quarter. On a third down play, Ole miss quarterback Matt Corral keeps the ball on what appears to be an ordinary read option play that is blown up by the Tennessee defense. After a forced fumble, linebacker Tyler Baron scoops up the ball and takes it back to make the score tied at 7. However, officials call the play back and gives an explanation that anyone with a football mind would find boggling.

The play was ruled dead because Matt Coral was “giving himself up” according to a statement released by the officiating crew. Coral was not giving himself up. By definition, the ball carrier must be making an effort to getting to the ground. Corral was standing up-right when contact was first made.

The ‘injury’ bug bites Ole Miss.

Now, I would like to start this off by saying I have never and will never cheer for a player that is genuinely injured on a play. Ole Miss did not fall into that genuine category. Ole Miss had 28 defensive injuries Saturday night against vs Tennessee on 78 offensive plays. So every 3.4 plays a player went down with an “injury.”

These injuries were absolute ludicrous. Many thought seemed every time Tennessee gained momentum a player went down and slowed down the Vols offense. As big as tempo has been to this offense, it is clear to see that this was designed by Lane Kiffin and proved beneficial to the second year head coach.

Tennessee falls to 4-3 on the season and will now travel to Tuscaloosa to battle the fourth ranked Crimson Tide. Josh Heupel has an uphill battle to climb. Heupel does have his this team trending in the right direction as the Vols lost yet another game due to calls and/or plays that were out of their control.

LSU Head Coach Candidates

LSU head coach candidates
Associated Press

The Tigers and head coach Ed Orgeron reached a separation agreement today, in which Orgeron would finish out the rest of the 2021 season and not come back. Nearly two years after winning a National Championship, Ed is now out in Baton Rouge. The move raises a huge question: Who now coaches at arguably one of, if not the best, head coaching jobs in college football? 

Below, I list out the LSU head coach candidates separated by three tiers: 

  1. Hot Candidates – Those who have been garnering the most buzz among the fanbase, media, etc.
  2. Outside looking in – Those who either have ties or would make good candidates, but something is not letting them be in that top tier.
  3. The Others – Those who are long-shots and either are not as qualified or will be almost impossible to get.

Top “Hot” LSU Head Coach Candidates: 

  • Mel Tucker – Michigan State HC: 
Michigan State coach Mel Tucker looks on after a touchdown in the first quarter of their college football game against Western Kentucky at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, on Saturday, October 2, 2021. (Mike Mulholland | MLive.com)

The current Michigan State head coach is in year two in East Lansing, and has done a great job so far. Tucker cleared out a good chunk of the roster after the 2020 season and replaced them with lots of transfers. He has also done a fairly nice job as a recruiter. It seems like a hard thing to do getting him to leave Michigan State. But, he has ties to the SEC under Nick Saban and Kirby Smart as an assistant.

Getting a chance to double his salary and having a large salary pool and recruiting base would be enticing enough for any candidate to leave. Tucker should be among the top candidates for the LSU head coach position 

  • Lane Kiffin – Mississippi HC: 
ESPN.com

Good ole Lane Kiffin. Coming off of a thrilling win against the Vols last night, Kiffin has his team rolling this year, getting out to a 6-1 start. We all know about Kiffin’s personality and his ability to mesh with his players. We also know about his ability to recruit anywhere at any time. The question is: can he succeed at a “blue blood” program? His results at USC and Tennessee aren’t that promising, and that may make a school like LSU hesitate. You cannot deny his offensive mind and the excitement that would bring to Baton Rouge, though. 

  • Billy Napier – Louisiana-Lafayette HC: 
Photo Courtesy: ragincajuns.com

Currently the coach at Louisiana-Lafayette, Napier has done an outstanding job of building that program. He has ties to Saban (WR coach at Alabama from 2013-2016) and is a great offensive mind, which is something the Tigers may need. Napier also has an idea of what it is like recruiting in-state, something LSU will need more of going forward. Napier may be a bit under the radar, but would make a great candidate for the vacant LSU head coach position.

  • Luke Fickell – Cincinnati HC: 
Adam Lacy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Notre Dame and Ohio State are the only two jobs I think Fickell would take. However, LSU sure as hell would give him something to think about. He has led the Bearcats to two 11-win seasons and is well on his way to another one. Fickell is as loyal as anyone when it comes to staying put, but the money, assistant salary pool, recruiting opportunities, etc may be too great to pass up. 

Outside Looking In:

  • James Franklin – Penn State HC: 
Getty Images

If it weren’t for the USC rumors, I would have put Franklin in that top tier. Instead, he falls into this second group due to his large buyout and his loyalty to Penn State (so far). He’s one of the best recruiters in the nation and has a knack for hiring good assistants. 

  • Jimbo Fisher – Texas A&M HC: 
Texas A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher, left, talks to quarterback Kellen Mond (11) during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Mississippi State, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Starkville, Miss. (AP Photo/Jim Lytle)

Same as Franklin above in terms of a large buyout ($95 Million!!!) but isn’t necessarily tied to Texas A&M like Franklin is. Still, that buyout is insanely large and would be tough to justify paying $100+ million for any coach not named Nick Saban. 

  • Mario Cristobal – Oregon HC: 
USATSI

Cristobal is an excellent recruiter, and has done a great job at Oregon so far. I think Miami makes a ton more sense for him to go to rather than LSU, but he sure would make an impact in Baton Rouge. Cristobal also has SEC experience as an assistant under Saban. 

The “Others”:

  • Matt Campbell – Iowa State HC: 
AMES, IA – OCTOBER 10: Head coach Matt Campbell of the Iowa State Cyclones gives two thumbs up after his team scored a touchdown in the second half of the play at Jack Trice Stadium on October 10, 2020 in Ames, Iowa. The Iowa State Cyclones won 31-15 over the Texas Tech Red Raiders. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)

Campbell has done an outstanding job at Iowa State considering the lack of recruiting prowess. He can develop talent with the best of them, and always has his teams ready for big games.

However, Campbell is an extremely loyal person (turned down multiple jobs to stay in Ames) so it will be hard to see him leaving Iowa State until it happens. Still, he should at least be on the list of potential LSU head coach candidates.

  • Dave Aranda – Baylor HC: 
Oct 3, 2020; Morgantown, West Virginia, USA; Baylor Bears head coach Dave Aranda yells from the sidelines during the third quarter against the West Virginia Mountaineers at Mountaineer Field at Milan Puskar Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

The former LSU DC has done a nice job in Year Two at Baylor. He is someone that may be a hard sell for the fanbase, in comparison to the other candidates involved. He can recruit well and always had good defenses, but does lack experience as the Head Guy.

Joe Brady – Carolina Panthers OC: 

Robby Anderson #11 of the Carolina Panthers talks with Offensive Coordinator Joe Brady during the Carolina Panthers Training Camp at Bank of America Stadium on August 21, 2020 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)

This is an under-the-radar candidate, but the former LSU OC seems happy in the NFL and it’s known that he does not enjoy recruiting that much.

Bill O’Brien – Alabama OC: 

New offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien watches the quarterbacks work during practice. The Alabama Crimson Tide opened practice for the 2021 season as they prepare to defend the 2020 National Championship Friday, Aug. 6, 2021. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.]

He did a very solid job at Penn State, considering the circumstances. This will just be an extremely hard sell for everyone involved (fanbase, players, boosters, etc) and O’Brien may be looking to go back into the NFL instead.