Ten contenders for Duke Football head coach
With the David Cutcliffe era officially coming to an end in Durham, the focus is now on identifying Duke’s next head coach. Here is a list of 10 candidates that sports director Nina King could have in mind, grouped into two categories. The main qualities we took into account were the ability to recruit a potential coach and their ability to produce lasting success.
Young Power Five Assistant
Marcus Freeman, defensive coordinator of Notre Dame
One of the fastest in the coaching industry, Freeman excelled as Luke Fickell’s right-hand man on the defensive end at Cincinnati for four seasons before joining the Fighting Irish last January. Although this is only his first year at Notre Dame, Freeman’s unit hasn’t missed a beat, ranking 11th nationally in points allowed per game as the Fighting Irish sit in. 11-1 and vying for the college football qualifiers. Freeman will likely have better deals on the table, but it’s absolutely worth a phone call.
Dan Lanning, Georgia Defensive Coordinator
While Lanning manages to train five stars in both depths at every position, the numbers are too impressive for the head coach not to factor in this cycle. Georgia are in the top three nationally in total defense, scoring defense and quick defense, and the Bulldogs are on the doorstep of the college football playoff seed for so long it can beat the n # 4 from Alabama to Atlanta this weekend. Unsure he would take the job, a source told The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman that, like Kirby Smart, Lanning is waiting for the law opportunity.
Joe Rudolph, Wisconsin offensive coordinator
A Wisconsin alumnus and Paul Chryst mentee, Rudolph might be reluctant to leave his alma mater, but he could still be an attractive option. He would definitely bring a change in mindset on the offensive end of the ball after Cutcliffe’s spread-oriented approach. One of the top 20 scouts according to 247Sports, Rudolph certainly deserves some credit for Wisconsin consistently producing stellar rushing attacks. He also coached in Pittsburgh for three seasons, so he’s no stranger to the CCA landscape.
Tim Banks, Tennessee Defensive Coordinator
The Volunteers were far from great defensively in the regular season, but that was in part due to the massive exodus the program faced in the last offseason. Prior to coming to Knoxville, Tenn., Banks spent five seasons as a defensive co-coordinator and safety coach under James Franklin at Penn State, so he has experience in a winning operation. Also considered a top scout, the former Central Michigan cornerback would at least solve some of the problems plaguing the Blue Devils on the defensive end of the ball.
Graham Harrell, USC Offensive Coordinator
He’s perhaps best known for that Michael Crabtree throw to take out Colt McCoy and the top ranked Texas in 2008, but the man can coach too. Since moving west following a stellar tenure in North Texas, the 36-year-old has been a beacon of hope for the program despite the general difficulties that have led the coach- Chief Clay Helton to get fired earlier this year. Probably a save option and someone who might have more affinity for the Pac-12 or the Big 12, but who deserves to be put on this list.
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Current Group of Five Head Coach
Will Healy, Charlotte
Do you remember this guy? Healy led the 49ers in a season-opening upset against Duke earlier this year, and boasts of ties to the state and the keen sense of programming to make it work here. His career record of 27-38 is nothing to build a statue on, but the Tennessee native built Austin Peay from 0-11 to 8-4 in a year and led Charlotte, who started playing at the level. FCS in 2013, in an era of respectability. This might be the safest bet in terms of who Nina King is hiring, especially considering her salary of $ 755,000.
Jamey Chadwell, Carolina Coastal
It would be a hell of a home run. Chadwell won every National Coach of the Year award imaginable last year, and the Chanticleers’ 21-3 record over the past two seasons makes him the all-five classic coach, ready to go. the jump. Chadwell’s pistol approach may not be conventional, but it has resulted in the sixth-highest points per game in college football this season. With an 89-54 record in North Greenville, Delta State, Charleston Southern and now Coastal Carolina, the 44-year-old is next.
Ken Niamatololo, Marine
He would be an off-the-beaten-path hire, but the Hawaii native may be looking for a fresh start after 14 seasons at the helm of the contenders. Niumatololo has nine seasons of at least eight wins during his tenure, including an 11-2 mark in 2019. Additionally, the Navy’s 6-4 record in bowls and two top 25 under Niumatololo is a level difficult to reach during a serve. academy. He would obviously have to change the triple option, but he already modernized it slightly during his time in Annapolis, MD. A creative option, but one that King might consider.
Bill Clark, UAB
Want a program builder? Well, what about someone whose first season at UAB ended with school president Ray L. Watts shutting down the program, only to get the team back on track? activities in 2017 with successive seasons of 8-5, 11-3 and 9-5? Clark has led the Blazers to .500 or better in every season of his tenure and has won two American Conference titles since 2018. He was even Eddie Robinson and Sporting News Coach of the Year in 2018. Well respected in football scholar, Clark may be up to the challenge.
Mike Houston, East Carolina
He has 10 years of experience as a head coach dating back to his time at Division II Lenoir-Rhyne, with a 94-44 addition. In their three years with the Pirates, Houston’s field has improved in conference every season, peaking with a 5-3 mark in 2021. Houston also won an FCS national title from James Madison in 2016, so the Championship pedigree is not lacking here. Not the flashiest rental in the world, but it would make sense if the Blue Devils went in that direction.
Max Rego is a junior and sports editor at Trinity for the 117th volume of The Chronicle.