Jameis Winston had the Heisman wrapped up in 2013. He has a chance to repeat as the nation’s best player but odds are against it.
It was just a matter of time before Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi’s name started being mentioned for this year’s head coach openings.
Jeremy Fowler of CBS Sports reports that UConn has requested an interview Narduzzi about the Huskies’ coaching vacancy.
We reported yesterday that should Texas dump Mack Brown, they could pursue some big names like Nick Saban, Jim Harbaugh or Jimbo Fisher.
Now, sources close to the situation tell us a decision on Brown is likely to drag out for a few days. Most believe Brown won’t go willingly. In other words, if Texas wants to make a change, it could be ugly.
The Orlando Sentinel reports that Florida State may still be vulnerable to losing Jimbo Fisher, even though he has agreed to a contract extension.
CBS’ Jason La Canfora reports the Redskins could pursue Baylor coach Art Briles when Mike Shanahan is officially shown the door.
The Dallas Morning News says that Briles is likely to stay in Waco.
Rumors continue to circulate that the Texans could pursue Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin.
Wake Forest has interviewed Bowling Green coach Dave Clawson. Clawson’s team won the MAC title by defeating Northern Illinois on Friday.
New Wyoming coach Craig Bohl will be paid a base salary of $750,000 a year at the start with the opportunity to earn up to $1.2 million with incentives. His contract is for five years.
CBSSports.com’s Bruce Feldman reports that Arkansas State coach Bryan Harsin is interviewing for the Boise State job today.
The Idaho Statesman reports that Broncos linebackers coach Bob Gregory will also interview for the job. Gregory and associate head coach Chris Strausser are believed to be the only two in-house candidates being considered.
Other candidates include Washington defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox, Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter and Harsin. All three have ties to Boise State.
Jon Gruden won’t pursue any NFL or college jobs and is committed to ESPN for 2014.
Even though Baylor coach Art Briles signed an extension in November, the National Football Post reports that he could be a prime candidate to replace former Texans coach Gary Kubiak, who was fired on Friday.
Briles has strong connections to Houston, having both played at coached at the University of Houston. In addition, Briles recruited Texans quarter-back Case Keenum out of high school to play for the Cougars.
Because Baylor is a private university, details of Briles’ contract are not available, but it is believed he has smaller buyouts that would allow him to go to the NFL or to the University of Texas.
McNair said during a press conference Friday that coaches with previous experience tended to have more success than coaches who were elevated from a coordinator position or other spot.
The NFP report also points out that former Bears coach Lovie Smith, a Texas native, also meets that criteria.
Photo: Tony Gutierrez, AP
Baylor has approved a 10-year contract extension for Art Briles that will run through the 2023 season.
“We feel fortunate to be at Baylor and are glad the feeling is mutual,” Briles told The Associated Press.
The Bears are currently 8-0 and No. 5 in the BCS rankings. Baylor is set to open its new $260 million football stadium next season.
With his name mentioned in connection with several openings last year, Baylor’s regents approved an eight-year extension that averaged $3.5 million. Wednesday’s extension adds three years to that contract.
The extension serves as a preemptive strike to Texas, or any other school that might come knocking. Details of the contract are not available because the school is a private institution, but the Dallas Morning News reports that Briles’ buyout is “significant.”
Baylor hired Briles following the 2007 season. When he arrived, the Bears had not posted a winning season since 1995 and had won just 10 of 96 games in the Big 12.
By 2010, Briles led Baylor to a bowl game, and quarterback Robert Griffin III gave the school its first Heisman Trophy a year later.
“The job that Art is doing on Baylor is going to be viewed as one of the greatest transformations in college football history,” Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw said.
” …Our university has shown great commitment to the football program through the stadium project as well as resources and infrastructure.”
Photo: Orlin Wagner, AP