Top Candidates to Replace Brady Hoke in Ann Arbor
It’s a been a week since Brady Hoke was fired as the University of Michigan’s head football coach, and the search is on to replace him. Despite the Wolverines’ losing record over the past few seasons, Michigan is still considered one of the premier coaching jobs in the country — and the team is expected to interview a number of impressive candidates for the position. Here are 6 individuals who could be in the mix to be the new headman in Ann Arbor.
He’s the clear No. 1 target in the eyes of most Michigan fans and alumni. But can the Wolverines poach him from one of the best teams in the NFL? A former Michigan quarterback, Harbaugh has taken the San Francisco 49ers to at least the conference championship game in each of the past three years. Michigan fans would be glad to have him back in Ann Arbor!
Another Michigan alumni, Les Miles played on the Wolverines offensive line under legendary coach Bo Schembechler. He’s been linked to the Michigan job before, previously calling it his “dream job.” But is Miles willing to leave his current gig at LSU, consistently one of the best teams in America, to come to Ann Arbor?
As head coach at Tennessee, Butch Jones is no stranger to rebuilding programs with rich traditions. He also happens to be a Michigan native who got his first college-coaching gig at Central Michigan. He’s bounced around quite a bit in his coaching career, migrating from Central Michigan to Cincinnati to Tennessee. But he’s a consistent winner and great recruiter who could get Michigan back on track quickly.
The head coach at UCLA, Jim Mora is a proven winner who has coached in both the college ranks and NFL. He’s a younger coach with great enthusiasm and a knack for developing players. Michigan could offer Mora more money than UCLA, but is he willing to leave a good job in Los Angeles for a rebuilding job 3,000 miles away?
If would break the heart of Michigan State fans in Lansing, but if Michigan is looking for a top-flight assistant with a track record for churning out top defenses year after year, Pat Narduzzi is the man. Narduzzi might be tempted to leave MSU head coach Mark Dantonio’s shadow and get the keys to his own program, but would he really be willing to join the Spartans’ top rival? And more importantly, would Michigan roll the dice on a person with no head coaching experience?
Greg Schiano is the only man on this list who isn’t currently employed, and you’d have to imagine he’d jump at the chance to take the job as Michigan’s head coach. Schiano is known as a disciplinarian. His style helped Rutgers emerge from a conference doormat into a steady contender in the Big East, but it didn’t work in the NFL, as he finished 11-21 in two years.