With football’s regular season reaching its conclusion on Saturday in Morgantown, W. Va., one questionis burning in everyone’s mind: Who will be the next head football coach at Baylor?
Acting head coach Jim Grobe reiterated at his weekly press conference on Monday that he will not be the head coach of Baylor football in 2017.
“I told the players and coaches when I came that I was just here to help. I didn’t come to restart a career. I really just wanted to help these guys get through a season,” Grobe said. “Mack [Rhoades] was very concerned as the season was progressing that we were playing well, that I understood that he was considering me. I wanted him to know early on that it has nothing to do with anything that has happened over the past five games that I was not a candidate, that I was here to help for a season and then I would be out of here, and that he needed to start his search and be focused to find the next best guy for Baylor.”
The search for Baylor’s next head football coach has been well under way since before Grobe’s reiteration on Monday. It had been previously reported that the Bears were interested in Southern Methodist University’s head coach Chad Morris and the University of Houston’s head coach Tom Herman. However, Herman was hired on Saturday at the University of Texas to replace Charlie Strong, and on Tuesday, sources close to Morris say that he told his staff that he would return to the Mustangs next season.
In a 247 sports article from Monday, Travis Haney reported that Baylor was moving on from its negotiations with Morris due to several complications. The first of which was a possible link between Morris and Texas A&M, if the Aggies were to fire Kevin Sumlin after dropping four of their last five games following a 6-0 start. The second was concerning the asking price for Morris, considering the offensive performance Navy displayed against the Mustangs on Saturday.
The sports division of the Dallas Morning News, Sportsday, reports that Morris countered an offer made to him by Baylor with a five-year, $24.5 million offer, which Baylor rejected. It also reports that the source said that if Morris declined the offer, then Baylor officials would deny any claims that an offer was made.
With Morris’ name out of the mix for now, a new name has emerged as the focus of Baylor’s search: University of California head coach Sonny Dykes. The Golden Bears are coming off of a disappointing 5-7 season, and after four seasons at Cal, Dykes is 19-30.
Dykes has ties to Texas, being the son of former Texas Tech head coach Spike Dykes. He also runs a high-speed, up-tempo offense that could translate well to Baylor and the offensive system that is in place for the Bears.
Mark Schlabach of ESPN also reports that former San Francisco 49ers coach and former Baylor linebacker Mike Singletary and Arkansas State’s Blake Anderson are potential other candidates. Haney reports that North Carolina’s Larry Fedora and Colorado’s Mike MacIntyre could also be targets for Baylor as well.
There is no timetable for Rhoades in bringing in the next head coach at Baylor. However, with a bowl game looming and an important recruiting season approaching, the quicker the decision, the quicker Baylor can get a fresh start and get back to business.