It really depends where you get a P5 coach from, and how long they had been there. Underwood was grabbed early from OSU after only 1 year, before he could truly get established. Something along those lines would be like when MSU grabbed Tucker from Colorado after 1 year. A similar hire in football would maybe be like a Neal Brown from WVU. He's only in his 2nd year, hasn't done anything extraordinary yet, and had a very promising coaching resume at Troy and as an assistant. The problem is the money, as coaches with newer P5 contracts are already making significant salaries and require buyouts. The sitting P5 coach I'm most interested in besides Brown is Dave Clawson at Wake. Since Wake is private, his salary isn't public, but he's an established coach, with a great track record of building programs. Illinois has a much higher ceiling than Wake as a program. If the money is there, I could see him considering the move.
The other P5 head coaches that we would have a chance at are the ones that are getting fired at programs with higher expectations or coaches at programs similar to us but with stagnant results. The "big program" guys are Muschamp, Malzahn, Pruitt, Helton, Herman. Of those, I'm not sure who would work well here. I'd say Tom Herman if Texas axes him could have good potential, with experience in the conference. Not sure that Muschamp, Pruitt, or Helton are that great of coaches, and I don't think Malzahn would be interested. The "stagnant program" guys would be like Narduzzi at Pitt, Babers at Syracuse, Doeren at NC State. Those would require a lot of money and wouldn't really be exciting or proven hires.
I guess that's a long way of saying its possible but probably not likely.
I agree that MSU is a massive step up from Colorado. I disagree about us being a MASSIVE step down from WVU. A step down yes, definitely, but we have similar ceilings, we've just been pretty much in our basement while WVU has been pretty comfortably within at least reaching distance of their ceiling. I was just trying to think of anything even close to the Underwood move. Those types of moves are so rare. There's also the comfort and location issue. Tucker in Colorado was a weird fit. He has history in the Big Ten. Brown has history in Kentucky so he's probably happy and comfortable at WVU. I was literally just trying to think of comparables. Illinois is still a "name" job in basketball. It has never had that status in football. The only way we could get a sitting P5 coach is if that coach was very unhappy at his current location or is vastly underpaid, and I don't see anyone matching that criteria.Um, MSU is a MASSIVE step up from Colorado. On the contrary, we are a MASSIVE step down from WVU.
Guys, let's be realistic. I know that is tough to do, and we want to shoot for the best possible, but that's what has led to a meltdown with the season so far. Yes, I expected us to be much better than we are. But for people that thought this would be a 5 win or more season (out of the 9 games we *should* have), you just were not paying attention to how bad this team could be at times last year.
We are not going to steal someone from a program significantly higher than us right now unless we shell out significantly more money than they currently make. Even that is still a stretch given our track record. Whitman got Underwood from Ok State because, at a minimum, we are an equal program (I would argue that we are a better program). It was a good pickup, but we cannot expect that to happen for football. Our best bet is someone with a proven track record of rebuilding a MAC or other non-Power 5 program IMO.
Babers is in charge of a desolate program when it comes to recruiting. It is extremely difficult to get the better players to come to that program. The better high school football players choose Syracuse after the school of their choice turns them down or does something to put the desired school in a bad light. A local example would be Donovan McNabb choosing Syracuse because Illinois would not assure him of a shot at qb. I won't drop any names but, there are a number of ex-Syracuse coaches that have expressed that sentiment to me.You bring up Babers, which is an interesting one. Here we are in November '20....is Babers still viewed in a favorable light? 24-33 in 4.5 seasons at Syracuse, including 10-3 in 2018. Just 6-14 since then, however. He was white hot in coaching circles, post 2015. Syracuse is not a power in the ACC, I view them as pretty "mid pack". Looks like he signed an extension in 2019, and I doubt Syracuse would let him go even if this year continues to be a big disappointment. Should he be on Whitman's list? Something to think about.
How would you describe illinois situation?Babers is in charge of a desolate program when it comes to recruiting. It is extremely difficult to get the better players to come to that program. The better high school football players choose Syracuse after the school of their choice turns them down or does something to put the desired school in a bad light. A local example would be Donovan McNabb choosing Syracuse because Illinois would not assure him of a shot at qb. I won't drop any names but, there are a number of ex-Syracuse coaches that have expressed that sentiment to me.
I was simply replying to the implication that Babers might not be a good solution because of his record in a couple of years. Since the new practice facility opened, one can't put Illinois in the same frame, regarding recruiting, as Syracuse. Syracuse, NY is a long way from anywhere and it gets incredibly cold there. Somewhat similar to North Dakota. There are a lot of things bad regarding how athletes look at us but, we don't compare to Syracuse.How would you describe illinois situation?
When I read this I saw you missed one. A high school coach ... of course they would probably turn us down.Well, ILL has tried pro assistant coaches (Valek, Turner), low major head coaches (Blackman, Beckman), former high major head coaches (White, Zook), former pro head coachs (Mackovic (who had coached at Wake Forest before the Chiefs), Smith), and high major assistant coaches (Tepper, Moeller),
By process of elimination, I guess the best option is a current high major head coach because ILL has not tried that option yet.
I agree. Sean Lewis is definitely on the list if he has a big year. He checks a lot of boxes, outside of HC experience, but building something at Kent State is significant. He's young, seems to have proven systems, from Illinois, played in B1G. Assuming he has a big year, he definitely seems more like a Matt Campbell than a Tim Beckman.Kent St. coach makes sense if he has a good year. A fired up young guy seems like a good move for this program.
From my google research just now, it looks like Locksley is the lowest paid B1G coach at 2.6 mil/year. You probably wouldn't even need to go that high to get Lewis. I'm not saying lowball him, but I don't see how he could turn down something in the 2.2-2.5 mil range. That's a good 5x increase. Could also give a sizeable salary pool for assistants.I am starting to like the Sean Lewis talk also. He’s making 440000 a year so I would think the jump in salary would be enticing
Good point. Technically the B1G season doesn't end til December 19th. Gonna be a weird coaching carousel. I wouldn't be surprised if the teams that are looking for new coaches do it before the end of their seasons. No idea how that would work out with a new staff effectively signing the recruiting class while the old staff finishes the season.Potential issue regarding Leipold/Lewis: the MAC season ends on December 12th, four days before early signing day.
Sean Lewis sounds great, but from the Twitter comments, it seems like Michigan fans want Sean Lewis. Seems like a bidding war Illinois would lose.