With all but a bit of rubber-stamping left to officially wrap things up, Nevada has found a successor to long-time head coach Chris Ault.
In a release, the school announced that it has reached an agreement with Brian Polian as the recommended candidate to become the 26th head coach in the 106-year history of the Wolf Pack football program. The recommendation on the finalist candidate will be presented to the Board of Regents for consideration at its scheduled meeting Friday in Las Vegas.
Barring a stunning turn of events, the regents will sign off on Polian’s hiring.
“Brian brings to Nevada a solid resume and a great vision for the future of Wolf Pack football,” athletic director Cary Groth said in a statement. “He has been mentored by some of the top football minds in the country and he has great experience in all three phases of the game. We’re excited to welcome Brian and his family to the Wolf Pack community.”
Polian spent 2012 as tight ends coach and special teams coordinator at Texas A&M. While the 38-year-old Polian has never been a head coach at the collegiate level, he does have over a decade of experience that includes coaching stops at Stanford, Notre Dame, Baylor, Michigan State, UCF and Buffalo.
The release states Polian, who interviewed for the job late last week, has agreed to a five-year contract that will pay him $475,000 annually.
“I would like to thank President Johnson and Cary for the incredible opportunity that they have presented me with,” Polian said. “I cannot express how excited I am to lead the Nevada football program into what will be a very bright future. I also want to take a moment to recognize and thank Coach Ault for the incredible foundation he has laid for Wolf Pack football. It is an honor for me to work to continue that legacy.
“It is a dream come true for me to become a head coach, and there have been many mentors and friends that have helped along the way. Marv Levy, Dom Capers, Tony Dungy and Jim Caldwell are all great men that I learned so much from when they allowed me to spend time around their teams and coaching staffs. Coaches like Nick Saban, Jim Hofher, Charlie Weis, Jim Harbaugh and Kevin Sumlin all influenced me a great deal as I had the pleasure of working for them at various stops in my career. I have no doubt that the lessons that I have learned from all of these great teachers, and from others I have encountered along the way, will serve me well as we begin this journey at Nevada.”
Polian will replace Ault, who surprisingly stepped down late last monh after nearly three decades on the job.
With Polian’s impending hire, Syracuse will be the lone FBS program without a head coach after Doug Marrone departed for the Buffalo Bills.
(Photo credit: Texas A&M athletics)