New Mexico State Aggies

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The Rumor Mill :: College Football Coaching News and Rumors – Monday, Dec. 2

Boise State coach Chris Petersen was in play at USC, but has reportedly withdrawn his name from the search.

Boise State coach Chris Petersen has withdrawn his name from the USC job. (Photo: AP)ESPN’s Joe Schad reports that Petersen withdrew his name “after mutual interest.”

FightOn247 reported on Sunday that Ed Orgeron or Vanderbilt’s James Franklin would likely next in line should Petersen decline, while ESPN reported that the Trojans were down to Petersen and Franklin.

According to ESPN L.A.’s Arash Markazi, Franklin and Petersen have been on Pat Haden’s short list for awhile with Franklin in the lead. Markazi also reports that USC is prepared to make Orgeron the highest paid assistant and an associate head coach.

ESPN L.A. also reported that Washington coach Steve Sarkisian interviewed with Haden over the weekend, but Sarkisian says that no interview took place.

Wyoming has fired head coach Dave Christensen. Sources tell us that Sam Houston State coach Willie Fritz is considered a serious candidate to replace him.

Oakland Raiders assistant and Wyoming alum Ted Gilmore is also rumored to be a candidate.

Should Fritz head to Wyoming, look for Texas co-OC Darrell Wyatt to get serious consideration to replace Fritz.

Texas A&M and head coach Kevin Sumlin have agreed to a six year deal worth $5 million per year. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports that Sumlin has agreed to not pursue any NFL jobs as part of his new contract.

We continue to hear Kyle Flood is in serious jeopardy at Rutgers. Flood says he’s not at all concerned with his future.

If Flood is fired between now and Feb. 1, he is owed an $850,000 buyout.

Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads announced that offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Courtney Messingham and running backs coach Kenith Pope have been let go.

We continue to hear that the situation at Texas remains very fluid. A win at Baylor and the Longhorns gain at least a share of the Big 12.

Would Texas force Mack Brown out after a 9-3 campaign and a Big 12 Championship? Most of our sources don’t think so. However, a bad loss to Baylor and it could be time to turn the page.

At TCU, multiple sources tell us to expect major changes on the offensive side of the ball.

Florida Head coach Will Muschamp fired offensive coordinator Brent Pease and offensive line coach Tim Davis.

We’ve heard all sorts of names over the past few days. Possibilities at offensive coordinator include Mike Mularkey, Lane Kiffin, Clay Helton and James Coley, among others.

Offensive line candidates are rumored to range from Neil Callaway to Stacy Searles to Joe Wickline.

New Mexico State fired defensive coordinator David Elson.

Another Ohio State assistant is rumored to be a candidate for the FAU job.

It was reported a couple of weeks ago that Buckeyes defensive coordinator Luke Fickell had interviewed for the job. At the time, Urban Meyer said he didn’t, but Fickell’s name has been hot ever since.

Now, sources indicate Buckeyes assistant head coach and running backs coach Stan Drayton could be a candidate.

FAU athletic director Pat Chun has told associates he wants to hire someone who can recruit Florida (a smart move), and Drayton has had recruiting success wherever he’s been.

Chun spent almost his entire career at Ohio State and apparently that’s all he knows. He has even enlisted  Meyer and A.D. Gene Smith to assist in his search.

So, Drayton fills two requirements: He works at Ohio State and he was a Florida with Meyer. Two boxes checked. Could he be the guy?

Luke Stampini of 247Sports reported Monday morning that Western Kentucky offensive coordinator Jeff Brohm could interview for the the FAU position.

Georgia’s Mark Richt has confirmed that defensive coordinator Todd Grantham will be back next season.

Charlie Weis‘ job at Kansas is safe. Athletic director Sheahon Zenger is confident that Weis has the program moving in the right direction.

Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas tells WCIA Channel 3 TV that Tim Beckman will return next season.

UCLA has fired running backs coach Steve Broussard. Sources indicate that USC running backs coach Tommie Robinson could be on UCLA’s radar.

Photo: Otto Kitsinger, AP

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Gregg Brandon bolts amid Wyoming staff shuffle

Gregg Brandon bolts from Wyoming to New Mexico State. (Photo: Alyssa Schukar/Toledo Blade)

Gregg Brandon has left Wyoming for New Mexico State. (Photo: Alyssa Schukar/Toledo Blade)

[dropcap]G[/dropcap]regg Brandon is leaving Wyoming to become the offensive coordinator at New Mexico State.

The move comes two days after Cowboys head coach Dave Christensen brought in ex-Idaho coach Jason Gesser to coach Wyoming’s quarterbacks – a position Brandon held along with the offensive coordinator title.

Asked about Gesser’s hiring, Brandon told the Laramie Star-Tribue, “Coach Christensen made that decision. That’s a good question for him.”

Regardless of the answer, Brandon is gone and new Aggie head coach Doug Martin is excited.

“This is one of the top recruits we got this year,” Martin said in a release. “Gregg (Brandon) brings a wealth of experience that is hard to find at this level, while being one of only two people I trust to hand over the play calling for this offense.”

Brandon spent the past two seasons as Wyoming’s offensive coordinator.

Brandon was Bowling Green’s head coach from 2003-08, taking over when Urban Meyer left for Utah. He was fired following a disappointing 6-6 in 2008 that saw the Falcons only win one home game.

Brandon served as Al Groh’s offensive coordinator at Virginia in 2009-10.

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Doug Martin to be named New Mexico State head coach

Report: Doug Martin will be named NMSU head coach. (Photo: Selene Romero/Roundup Daily)

Report: Doug Martin will be named NMSU head coach. (Photo: Selene Romero/Roundup Daily)

[dropcap]D[/dropcap]oug Martin will be named head coach at New Mexico State this afternoon at 5:30 p.m. EST, according to a report from Bruce Feldman of CBSSports.com.

Martin was named interim head coach on Jan. 24 when DeWayne Walker left to become the Jacksonville Jaguars secondary coach. That interim title will be removed today.

This will be Martin’s second stint as a head coach. He coached Kent State Martin 2004-2010, compiling a 29-53 record.

Martin resigned following the 2010 season and was hired by Walker as New Mexico State’s offense coordinator in 2011. He left after one season for a similar position on Frank Spaziani’s staff at Boston College, but returned to Las Cruces as offensive coordinator when Spaziani was fired in November.

Sources close to the program indicate that even before Martin’s return to NMSU, the wheels were already in the motion for Walker to get back to the NFL and for Martin to become New Mexico State’s head coach.

The 49-year old Martin began his coaching career at East Tennessee State in 1988 and coached there until 1991. From 1992-2002, Martin coached at East Carolina, all under curent Tampa Bay Bucs running backs coach Steve Logan. Martin served as offensive coordinator his last seven seasons at ECU.

Martin served as Kent State’s offensive coordinator for one season (2003) before being named head coach.

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Former Wisconsin OL coach Miller hired at NMSU

Bart Miller named New Mexico State offensive line coach. (Photo: Jeff Hanisch/USA TODAY Sports)

Bart Miller will be New Mexico State o-line coach. (Photo: Jeff Hanisch/USA TODAY Sports)

[dropcap]F[/dropcap]ormer Wisconsin offensive line coach Bart Miller has been named offensive line coach at New Mexico State.

Last season, Miller was in his second year as a graduate assistant at Wisconsin when he was promoted to offensive line coach.

The Badgers had one of their worst rushing performances in years against Oregon State in week two, gaining just 35 yards on 23 carries and scoring only seven points in a 10-7 loss.

Bret Bielema promptly fired coach Mike Markuson and promoted Miller.

“There wasn’t a lot of time to think about it,” Miller said. “We had to get ready to go.”

Slowly but surely the Badgers’ line came around.

Wisconsin gained 467 yards on the ground vs. Purdue and a few weeks later rushed for a school-record 564 yards and seven touchdowns at Indiana. In the Big Ten title game, Wisconsin piled up 539 yards on the ground and eight touchdowns in a 70-31 rout of Nebraska.

“He got us all back on one page, got us all together as a unit instead of five individuals, which we lost there for a little bit,” sophomore offensive tackle tackle Rob Havenstein said. “We started getting back to trying to be the best in the country.”

The turnaround helped Miller earn the title of Big Ten’s Best Assistants by ESPN.com.

“Obviously, with his experience in taking a team all the way to the Rose Bowl is a big plus for our program,” interim NMSU head coach Doug Martin said in a release. “We are excited to have Bart (Miller) as a member of our staff.”

A native of Omaha, Neb., Miller played his college ball at the University of New Mexico. He worked in the Chicago Blackhawks’ front office before becoming a graduate assistant at New Mexico State in 2010.

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Walker officially leaving New Mexico State

This time it’s official.

Reports surfaced late Tuesday night that New Mexico State head coach DeWayne Walker was leaving to become the Jacksonville Jaguars as secondary coach.

On Wednesday, nothing was officially announced and Walker flew from the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. to Las Cruces to meet with school officials. Some took that as Walker having second thoughts, but sources close to the situation indicate that Walker just wanted to tell them his intentions in person.

DeWayne Walker has left New Mexico State to become the Jaguars' secondary coach. (Photo: AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

DeWayne Walker is headed back to the NFL. (Photo: AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

“I really appreciate the opportunity that Dr. Boston and New Mexico State gave me to be a division I head football coach,” Walker said in a statement released through the school. “Unfortunately, I did not get the program as far as I would have liked from a wins and losses standpoint. But, we do have a better locker room, better kids and a better foundation for the program moving forward.

“There are a lot of people that I want to thank for their support and will be reaching out to those individuals in the coming days. They have helped me in moving the program forward. I am excited about starting a new chapter in my coaching career, as is my family. I wish New Mexico State great success in the future and wish everyone the best. Go Aggies!”

Walker, who compiled a 10-40 record in four seasons at New Mexico State including a 1-11 mark in 2012, had expressed concern over a lack of resources dedicated to the program.

Walker joins the staff of Gus Bradley, the former Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator who took over the Jags last week. Walker and Bradley have a connection through Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll.

Bradley was Carroll’s defensive coordinator the last two seasons in Seattle before getting hired by the Jaguars. Walker was Carroll’s first hire once he became head coach at USC Trojans in 2001, and spent the three seasons before that under Carroll in a similar role with the New England Patriots.

NMSU has named offensive coordinator Doug Martin as interim head coach. Martin coached the Aggie offense during the 2011 season before accepting a similar position at Boston College last year. He returned to NMSU last week on a two-year contract after being let go at BC.

Martin was head coach of the Kent State Golden Flashes from 2004-2010, where he compiled a record of 29-53.

According to  Don Kloppenburg, a longtime college football coach who lives in Las Cruces, Martin came back to the school with the understanding that Walker’s departure could be in the works.

“He definitely anticipated it,” Kloppenburg said,

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