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Tag:Mike Leach
Posted on: November 13, 2010 12:01 pm
 

Colorado has contacted Bellotti, Richt next?

Posted by Tom Fornelli

As Colorado continues its search for a new coach, it appears the school is keeping its eyes on the big fish.  On Friday the Denver Post reported that Colorado had already talked to former Oregon coach Mike Bellotti about replacing Dan Hawkins. 

"We had some initial talks, nothing more than that," Bellotti told the paper. "As this thing goes on, we'll see. That's the only way I can characterize it.  I'm interested in getting back in coaching but it would have to be the right situation. I'll have to do some research and get a better feel."

Bellotti, however, is not the only coach that it Colorado would like to talk to.  The school was already reportedly interested in trying to pry Les Miles away from LSU, but changed its mind after LSU beat Alabama last week.  So now, according to another report in the Denver Post, the Buffaloes have turned their eyes to another coach in the SEC.

Georgia head coach Mark Richt .

According to the report, although Richt is no longer in danger of losing his job, a source said that he is growing weary of the pressure that comes with coaching in the SEC.  Ironically enough, the seat Richt sits on was its hottest following a Georgia loss at Colorado earlier this season.  Still, there's a problem for Colorado when it comes to hiring Richt or Bellotti.

Athletic director Mike Bohn has said that the school probably won't be able to go over $2 million annually for a new head coach, and Richt already makes more than that, and it's doubtful Bellotti would come back for that amount either.  Unless the school wants to invest more money into a new coach -- and according to Gary Barnett, they won't -- the odds of Colorado landing either Bellotti or Richt are pretty slim.

As for another possible candidate, Colorado's chancellor said earlier this week he'd prefer a coach with ties to the Big 12 or Pac 10, which is a description that fits former Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach.   Though according to the same source that told the paper about Richt, that's not going to happen because Leach comes with "too much baggage."
Posted on: November 9, 2010 5:42 pm
Edited on: November 9, 2010 6:23 pm
 

AUDIO: Jacobi on Sirius/XM CFB Playbook Radio

Posted by Adam Jacobi

Earlier today, I was fortunate enough to join the CFB Playbook on Sirius/XM Sports with Jack Arute and Mike Leach. We discussed the Cam Newton report from Thayer Evans that had been released last night and wondered aloud about why, precisely, the report had been released. Check out the entire segment below.

It's worth pointing out that this discussion took place before AuburnSports.com released their own report later this afternoon that directly contradicts Evans and makes me look a little dumb for taking Evans' report at face value. Also, later that day, Paul Finebaum reported that Mississippi State head coach (and former UF assistant) Dan Mullen , not anybody still connected with Florida , was behind the academic allegations. That makes wayyyy more sense than any of the spitballing we were doing about Florida, so Gator partisans, feel free to ignore all that talk.

At any rate, have a listen anyway; I had a lot of fun and I hope Arute and Leach did as well.


Posted on: November 4, 2010 2:26 pm
Edited on: November 13, 2010 6:06 pm
 

Fulmer not interested in Minnesota job

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Since firing Tim Brewster , just about every college football coach who has experienced any kind of success in the last 20 years running a program has had his name pop up as a possible candidate to take the head coaching job at Minnesota .  Names like Mike Leach , Tony Dungy , Chris Petersen , Gary Patterson and even Lou Holtz have been tossed out as candidates.  All coaches who probably wouldn't leave their current gigs for the Gophers without a gun pointed to their heads.

Another coach who had been named, and is actually out of work and looking to get back in the game, is former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer .  Fulmer would be a much more viable candidate than somebody like Petersen or Patterson, but there's one small problem for Minnesota.  According to a radio report, he doesn't want the job.

Jimmy Hyams , a radio host at Knoxville's WNML-AM/FM, said on his show Thursday that he contacted Fulmer about his interest in the Minnesota job and that Fulmer said it "was not a good fit" for him.  Which isn't all that surprising.  Odds are that at the age of 60, if Fulmer wants to get back in to coaching he's going to want to do so at a program that won't provide such a sizable challenge as Minnesota does.

The Gophers aren't built to compete in the Big Ten right now, and it would take years before any coach was able to get the program on par with schools like Ohio State , Wisconsin , Iowa , Nebraska and even Michigan .
Posted on: November 3, 2010 2:05 pm
Edited on: November 13, 2010 6:06 pm
 

Minnesota is shooting for the stars

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Halloween was four days ago, but it seems that Minnesota refuses to take off it's costume.  It decided to dress up as a big-time football program this year, and go from coach's door to coach's door offering each one the opportunity to take over for Tim Brewster.

So far in the Minnesota coaching search we've heard some big names.  Guys like Tony Dungy, Mike Leach and Phillip Fulmer have all been mentioned as possible targets for the Gophers.  Well, while it is somewhat delusional for Minnesota to think that it's the type of school that a coach would view as a step forward in their career, the Gophers want you to know that we've only seen the beginning of their delusions.

According to a report in the Pioneer Press, the Gophers have three other targets atop their list.

At least the University of Minnesota is shooting high in its quest for a new football coach.

A little birdie says the Gophers have targeted, in order of priority, Boise State's Chris Petersen, Stanford's Jim Harbaugh and Texas Christian's Gary Patterson to replace the fired Tim Brewster.

It seems unlikely any of the trio would leave what he has built for a gigantic rebuilding challenge at Minnesota.
Look, everyone!  Minnesota thinks it's people!

Seriously, while I admire Minnesota shooting for the stars in its search for a new coach, who exactly is it trying to kid here?  Chris Petersen is at a program like Boise State that doesn't seem to have much in its way to a BCS bowl game every season, and if he chose to leave Idaho, he'd have his choice of just about any program in the country with an opening.

Why would he choose Minnesota?

Then you have Jim Harbaugh, who might be looking to leave Stanford for a job in the Big Ten, but that job is in Ann Arbor, not Minneapolis.

Gary Patterson is in much the same boat as Peterson, but it's possible that TCU could be moving to the Big East in the future, which would basically be a guaranteed trip to a BCS game every season as well.  Plus, Minnesota considered Patterson before hiring Brewster, and he wasn't all that interested then, so why would he be now?

I get why Minnesota is going this route.  First of all, you never really know.  If they drive up to one of these coaches homes with a Brinks truck full of cash, someone might just say yes.  It also looks good to the fan base that the school can say they tried to land the big name coach.

But it's not going to happen.

Posted on: November 2, 2010 11:45 am
Edited on: November 2, 2010 11:46 am
 

New Mexico loses QB to pumpkin-carving accident

Posted by Tom Fornelli

It's pretty hard not to feel a little sorry for the New Mexico football program.  It's even harder not to laugh at it.  The Lobos are 0-8 this season, and 1-19 over the last two years.  The only time we write about them here is when Mike Leach is saying he's not crazy enough to take over the program , or their current head coach is just crazy enough that you actually have to consider that he may have attacked a student reporter at a sports bar.   When that's not good enough, we write about New Mexico beat reporters who lose their jobs for emailing players and kind of suggesting they should quit the team.

So this story really shouldn't shock you in the least.  You should in no way be surprised to find out that the Lobos have lost a quarterback for the rest of the season due to a pumpkin-carving accident
New Mexico's unfathomably bad season took a turn for the worse before the Lobos left Albuquerque.

Part-time starting quarterback Brad Gruner sliced the pinkie on his throwing hand and required season-ending surgery.

The accident happened while carving a pumpkin.
Gruner was carving "Help" into the pumpkin when the accident happened.*  His loss won't be that big of a deal for New Mexico, as they've been using three other terribly ineffective quarterbacks this season in what was some kind of four-headed monster hell-bent on not winning football games.  In fact, anytime a pumpkin-carving accident can help get a player named Stump Godfrey on the field more, it's a wonderful thing.

*I assume this is what he was carving, anyway

Hat tip: SBNation


Posted on: October 20, 2010 3:32 pm
Edited on: November 13, 2010 6:14 pm
 

Lou Holtz to Minnesota?

Posted by Tom Fornelli

The coaching corpse of Tim Brewster hasn't even begun rotting yet, but there's already been plenty of movement to find a replacement in Minnesota.   The Gophers wanted Tony Dungy, Dungy said no thanks, but he'll help.  He then offered up Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Lesley Frazier, to which I replied Mike Leach, and then this morning interim head coach Jeff Horton said the school should look at Vikings offensive coordinator Scott Linehan.

But what if the Gophers wanted to go the crazy route?  What if they actually wanted to look outside the state of Minnesota for a replacement?  Apparently there are some within the schools who have set their eyes on a crazy old man in Bristol, one who just might have the prescription to make Minnesota football all better.  That's right.  Dr. Lou.
There was some talk Tuesday that some local dreamers will try to bring Lou Holtz , 73, back as Gophers football coach, with a master plan that Holtz's son Skip, the coach at South Florida, would succeed his dad at Minnesota.

The late Leroy Gardner, who worked for Holtz as an academic adviser at Minnesota, described Holtz as "the most sophisticated (fibber) he had ever seen."
Lou Holtsch back to coach the Minneshota Golden Gophersh?  Shufferin' shuccotash!

Holtz spent two years at Minnesota before leaving to take over the job at Notre Dame, leading the team to the Independence Bowl.  The Gophers beat Clemson in that game, but Holtz had already left for South Bend by then. 

Personally, I don't know that hiring Holtz would really make all that much sense for the Gophers.  He is 73 years old, and he seems pretty content with his television gig.  Besides, I don't want Minnesota's football team being the only people in this country privy to Holtz' pep talks and life advice.  That wouldn't be fair to the rest of us.

Posted on: October 18, 2010 11:30 am
Edited on: November 13, 2010 6:14 pm
 

Minnesota needs Mike Leach, not Tony Dungy

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Now that Minnesota has officially fired Tim Brewster the search for a new head coach in Minneapolis has already gotten under way.  Heck, the Gophers have already been turned down by their top target, Tony Dungy. 

Though Dungy is willing to help his alma mater out in finding its next coach, and he even has somebody in mind.   Unfortunately for Minnesota, the man that Dungy has in mind is not the answer to what ails the Gophers.  I'd also guarantee that the man the school does need is not on Tony Dungy's radar.

Pirates prefer to stay off the radar.

While Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Lesley Frazier may be a good coach, the fact is he's never been a head coach, and no matter how much Tony Dungy likes him, Frazier won't make Minnesota a destination.

Mike Leach would.

If Minnesota athletic director Joel Maturi doesn't place a call to Mike Leach before he does Frazier, or any other potential candidate, he's doing a disservice to his school.  Mike Leach is a head coach that would not only bring attention to Minnesota, but he'd also reinvent the program, and just might turn the Gophers into a legitimate threat in the Big Ten.

When was the last time Minnesota could say that?

Yes, there are possible distractions with Leach.  I can't look past the alleged treatment of his former receiver, Adam James.   Still, I can't help but think that if Adam James wasn't the son of ESPN's Craig James, Leach's pirate ship would still be anchored at Texas Tech.

Aside from that one mistake in Lubbock, though, look at what Leach has done with his football teams on the field.  In ten seasons at Texas Tech the Red Raiders never had a losing season, has had ten straight bowl appearances, and never won less than seven games in a season.

You know how many times Minnesota can say they've done any of that in the last ten years?  Let's see, the Gophers have had five winning seasons since 2000, four of which came when Glen Mason was the head coach.  The school has won more than seven games only twice in those ten years, though they have gone to eight bowl games.

They finished higher than fifth in the Big Ten once in those ten years.

In other words, the Gophers have had very similar success to what Texas Tech had before they hired Mike Leach.

So the question for Maturi is this: does he want to go with the career coordinator who might bring a winning tradition to Minnesota, and is good friends with Tony Dungy, or does he want to go with the coach who has proven he knows how to win football games and can put a school on the map?

Seems like an easy decision to me.  If Minnesota wants change then a mutiny is in order, and you need a real pirate to do that.

Posted on: October 16, 2010 11:48 pm
Edited on: October 17, 2010 9:19 pm
 

What I learned from the Big Ten (Oct. 16)

Posted by Adam Jacobi

1. It's anybody's conference. With Wisconsin putting the finishing touches on a stunning 31-18 upset of the Ohio State Buckeyes, here are the teams that are at least tied with OSU in the Big Ten standings: Michigan State, Iowa, Purdue, and Wisconsin. Purdue is probably not going to contend for the Big Ten title, but the other three teams mentioned certainly will. Michigan State, of all the teams, must be the most ecstatic about the result in Madison; the Spartans are undefeated, the only Big Ten team who's 3-0 in the conference, and they miss Ohio State this year. But Iowa's at 2-0 in conference play, and the Spartans have to visit Iowa City in two weeks. Who would have thought back in August that MSU at Iowa could be the most pivotal contest of the Big Ten season?

2. Denard Robinson is most certainly mortal. It's not as Denard Robinson was a non-factor against the Iowa Hawkeyes today: Robinson racked up 204 yards of total offense in about 35 minutes of work. But for the third time this season, Shoelace left a game with an injury, and for the second time, that injury shelved him for the rest of the game. One of the most remarkable things about Robinson's production thus far is the sheer heft of Robinson's workload. Yes, he can't lead the nation in rushing and throw for over 200 yards without either throwing or rushing on the vast majority of Michigan's snaps. But that's an incredibly difficult thing to do, and now we're seeing some evidence that it's just not sustainable -- especially now that Robinson's not facing cupcake defenses like Massachusetts or Notre Dame (I kid, ND, I kid). Thanks to a bye week, Robinson has two weeks to recover before his next start, at Penn State. Does Tate Forcier still gets some snaps in relief at Beaver Stadium? Should he?

3. Wisconsin's rushing game is alive and well. Coming into today, John Clay was having a pretty good season, but considering Wisconsin's opposition, Clay wasn't looking dominant. That changed this week, when the big junior running back was running untouched through giant rushing lanes against Ohio State. That's not entirely surprising, but if Iowa doesn't have the best defensive line in the conference, then Ohio State surely must, and that Buckeye front four was absolutely gouged today. So if the Badgers can run all over Ohio State, they can probably run all over everybody left on their schedule. Again, the only remaining great defensive line on Wisconsin's schedule is Iowa, and that game's coming up this week. That should be just a little fun to watch. 

4. Congratulations to Penn State, who did not lose this week. Technically, it didn't play, but any iota of good news is welcome in Happy Valley these days.

5. Don't be that surprised if Illinois runs the table from here on out. It would be foolish to look at Illinois and see just another .500 team. Illinois' three losses are to still-undefeated Missouri, still-undefeated Michigan State, and only-recently-defeated Ohio State. In every one of those games, Illinois was competitive into the fourth quarter. And guess what: Illinois doesn't have any games against ranked competition left. Nathan Scheelhaase and Mikel LeShoure are growing as a QB-RB tandem week to week, and the toughest opponent left on the Illini schedule is, oh, let's say Northwestern. Illinois may be 3-3 today, but it may be 8-4 (or even better) before you know it.

6. The Tim Brewster farewell tour's going to be hard to watch. Fans of comedy in college football are going to lose an important ally this season, as Minnesota informed the world that Tim Brewster's not coming back next season. It's a shame, really, but it's only surprising insofar as Brewster hasn't been asked to clean out his office right now instead. Minnesota's got some decent athleticism, especially on the edges, so if that talent gets in the hands of a decent coach (MIKE LEACH MIKE LEACH MIKE LEACH DO ITTTTTTT), that program up north might wake up and make some noise next season. But only if Minnesota hires Leach.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com