Former Colorado running back and Heisman Trophy winner Rashaan Salaam watches from the sidelines during the third quarter of an NCAA college football game between Colorado and Washinton in Boulder, Colo., on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Washington won 38-3. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Earlier in the week it was reported that Lane Kiffin was in the mix to fill the head coaching vacancy at Houston. Come Sunday, or shortly thereafter, the Alabama offensive coordinator may be taking the next step in returning to lead his own college football program.
Citing multiple unnamed sources, SBNation.com‘s Steven Godfrey is reporting that Kiffin will interview for the Houston job after Alabama’s SEC Championship game against Florida Saturday afternoon. Kiffin has also been mentioned as a possibility to take over the coordinator role at LSU, giving his current head coach motive to campaign for him to land the Cougars job.
From Godfrey’s report:
Multiple sources have also confirmed to SB Nation that Alabama head coach Nick Saban is actively promoting Kiffin to Houston, ostensibly to keep his OC from jumping to a division rival next season.
Kiffin is in his third season as the Crimson Tide’s coordinator. He has been a head coach at the collegiately level on two different occasions, compiling an overall record of 28-15 during stops at Tennessee (2009) and USC (2010-13). He also had a disastrous stay with the NFL’s Oakland Raiders, posting a 4-12 record his first year before being fired after a 1-3 start to his second season.
Cougars offensive coordinator Major Applewhite and defensive coordinator Todd Orlando will also interview for the job. Orlando is serving as UH’s interim head coach and will coach the Cougars in their bowl game. Ex-LSU head coach Les Miles and Oklahoma offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley have also been connected to the opening.
Amidst the beginning wave of early departures for the NFL, Iowa State has staved of attrition on that front.
In a missive posted to his personal Twitter account, Allen Lazard announced that, “after discussing my options with my family and coaching staff, I have decided to return for my senior year.” His reasoning for eschewing the NFL for another year? “”I feel we’re on the verge of something special here and I want to be along for the ride.”
The move doesn’t come as too much of a surprise as the 6-5, 233-pound wide receiver had indicated earlier in the season that he was leaning toward returning.
One last go around! pic.twitter.com/FgCBZW22nJ
— Allen Lazard (@AllenLazard) December 2, 2016
After finishing second his freshman season, Lazard has led the Cyclones in receiving each of the past two seasons. This past season in particular, Lazard was the primary focus of ISU’s passing attack. Lazard’s 69 receptions for 1,018 yards was far and away tops on the team. Next up? The 37 catches from Deshaunte Jones and Trever Ryen, and Jones’ 536 yards.
ISU went 3-9 in Matt Campbell‘s first season in Ames. This marks the fourth consecutive season in which the Cyclones have failed to reach a bowl game.
Has Baylor honed in on its top target — or two — to permanently replace Art Briles?
With a significant number of signs pointing to Chad Morris being Baylor’s initial focus, SMU announced Wednesday that it had reached an agreement with its head coach on a contract extension through the 2023 season. Not long after, Mark Schlabach of ESPN.com reported that BU would now shift the focus of their search to Cal’s Sonny Dykes.
Thursday night, a report surfaced that Dykes and the Big 12 Bears have been in contact and held conversations.
Sonny Dykes has spoken with Baylor, according to our Scout colleagues at HD: https://t.co/PI2JehyJcU
— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) December 2, 2016
Dykes completed his fourth season at Cal late last month. In three of those four seasons, including 2016, the Bears have failed to qualify for a bowl. In 2015, Cal won eight games; in the other three seasons, the Bears combined to win 11 games.
The son of legendary Texas Tech head coach Spike Dykes, Sonny Dykes is a well-steeped disciple of the so-called “Air Raid” offense. Given the type of players Briles recruited to Waco the past several years, especially offensively, Dykes would seemingly offer a smoother transition personnel-wise than someone outside that particular coaching tree. The Texas native’s extensive ties to his home state would be a draw to the program as well.
While Yahoo! has previously disputed the notion that Dykes has now emerged as BU’s focus, Pat Forde says the Cal coach is one of five or six who could still in the mix for the job. Another? Mike MacIntyre, according to that and numerous other outlets.
I’ve been told Mike MacIntyre will interview for the #Baylor job after the PAC 12 title game. Believes it’d be a great fit. Faith & Football
— CT Steckel (@ctsteckel) December 2, 2016
Mike MacIntyre believed to be high on #Baylor wish list .. would be a terrific move if pulled off
— Rich Cirminiello (@RichCirminiello) December 2, 2016
The reports connecting MacIntyre to Baylor come amidst Colorado’s preparations for the Pac-12 championship Friday night against Washington.
MacIntyre took over a Buffaloes program that won a combined four games in 2011 and 2012, but then won just four, two and four games his first three seasons at the school. In 2016, however, the Buffs went 10-2, the football program’s first 10-win season since 2001. They are also bowl-eligible for the first time since the 2007 season.
It would seem odd that a coach, even a devout Baptist such as MacIntyre, would leave a program seemingly on the rise for one enveloped in a cloud of controversy. Especially a coach with zero ties, personally, professionally or otherwise, to either the program or the state. Earlier this week, at least one respected national college football writer has attempted to toss some cold water on the speculation.
Heard from pretty much the best possible source Mike MacIntyre is not a possibility at Baylor.
— Dennis Dodd (@dennisdoddcbs) November 30, 2016
With his name being mentioned in connection to other jobs, it’s expected CU will commence talks on a contract extension following the title game. In 2016, MacIntyre was the lowest-paid head coach in his conference.
A career that began with much promise will, at least the Champaign portion, end with a departure.
On social media Thursday night, Desmond Cain announced that he has decided to transfer out of the Illinois football program and continue his collegiate playing career elsewhere. According to the wide receiver, a desire to be closer to his home in Florida triggered his decision.
After talking it over with my family it’s best to move closer home to finish off my next few years in college! Thank you Illini! Has been amazing these two years I’ve been here and thank you all for the major support GO ILLINI!
A three-star 2015 signee, Cain was rated as the No. 146 player at any position in the state of Florida coming out of high school in Delray Beach.
With Bill Cubit as his head coach as a true freshman, Cain was second on the Illini in receptions (53) and third in receiving yards (492). Those totals dropped to five and 61 in Lovie Smith‘s first year as injuries caused the receiver to miss six games.
If the 5-11, 185-pound Cain ends up at another FBS program, he’d have to sit out the 2017 season. He’d then have two years of eligibility remaining beginning in 2018.