Depending how things play out in the coming days, it could be a big name that fills the coaching void at Houston.
Wednesday, UH board of regents chair Tilman Fertitta confirmed to the Houston Chronicle the football program has some interest in Les Miles and the former LSU head coach “has some interest in us.” “I’m not saying he’s No. 5 on the list or No. 1 on the list. He’s just on the list,” Fertitta added.
ESPN.com‘s Brett McMurphy subsequently confirmed the report, adding that Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin has emerged as a candidate for the Cougars job as well. It’s been reported that Ed Orgeron, Miles’ successor at LSU, is heavily pursuing Kiffin to be the Tigers’ coordinator.
West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen and former Baylor head coach Art Briles were also mentioned by the Chronicle as potential hires. On the former front, McMurphy writes that “a source told ESPN that it is ‘highly unlikely’ Holgorsen would leave a Power 5 job at West Virginia for Houston.”
The latter? Briles’ scandalous and controversial exit from Baylor would seemingly make it next to impossible for the coach to return to UH, although Fertitta didn’t completely slam the door on such a hire.
“There’s a lot of administrator and ex-administrators and board of regents from Baylor that say that Art Briles was a scapegoat at Baylor,” Fertitta told the Chronicle. “I’ve had calls from ex-chairman of the board of regents there, current big booster there, lawyers that represent Baylor. I have not had one negative call about Art Briles. But there still seems to be a clarity issue. …
“I would love for Art Briles to be on our super-short list. But until, or if, or when we can ever get full clarity, I can’t see us going there.”
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.
Regardless of who ultimately becomes Tom Herman‘s permanent replacement, Fertitta told the Chronicle a decision could be made by the “middle of next week.”