Cal Coaching Candidate Hot Board

Who could be in play to replace Jeff Tedford as head coach of the Golden Bears? Cal Sports Digest tracks the candidates.

Sonny Dykes
Current Position:
Head Coach, Louisiana Tech
Age:
43
Overall record:
22-15
Salary:
$700,000
Buyout:
$500,000
Notable:
Dykes' Bulldogs still had a chance to break into the BCS before their overtime loss to Utah State on Saturday night. Colby Cameron was the last starting quarterback in the FBS to throw an interception.
Positives:
A disciple of Mike Leach and his Air Raid spread passing offense, Dykes is directing the nation's most productive attack in terms of points and yards, and would inherit personnel perfectly suited to run his scheme. Dykes spent three years as the offensive coordinator at Arizona, and has some familiarity with the Pac-12.
Negatives:
Dykes will be highly sought after, especially with several vacancies likely in the SEC. He would also be the logical choice for Texas Tech, his alma mater where his father Spike Dykes was head coach, if Red Raiders head coach Tommy Tuberville were to take another job.

Mike MacIntyre
Current Position:
Head Coach, San Jose State
Age:
47
Overall record:
16-21
Salary:
$500,000
Buyout:
N/A
Notable:
MacIntyre has worked miracles with the Spartans, securing bowl eligibility this season for the first time since 2008 and a winning record got the first time since 2006.
Positives:
In addition to his success on the field, MacIntyre has also engineered a major turnaround on the academic front. He also brings a strong defensive pedigree, yet has an offense that ranks third in the nation in passing efficiency.
Negatives:
MacIntyre does not have any formal ties to the Pac-12. Despite his success this season, he might not be a flashy enough hire for a program that has jettisoned its most successful coach in the modern era.
12/4 update: Jon Wilner of the Bay Area News Group reports that MacIntyre interviewed with Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour last Friday.

11/27 update: MacIntyre was a finalist for the Kentucky job, which ended up going to Florida State defensive coordinator Mark Stoops.

Bob Diaco
Current Position:
Defensive Coordinator, Notre Dame
Age:
39
Overall record:
N/A
Salary:
N/A
Buyout:
N/A
Notable:
Diaco's Irish defense ranks first in the nation in points allowed, fourth in rush defense, and sixth in total defense, as they completed an undefeated regular season and will play for the BCS title.
Positives:
Notre Dame has built the nation's best defensive line and front seven under his direction. Diaco can recruit nationally and would have a major media platform going into the BCS championship against Alabama.
Negatives:
Diaco is regarded by those that cover Notre Dame as an Xs and Os wonk that may not be capable of dealing with boosters, though he is well-liked by players. The BCS title game would obviously be his main focus until the first week of January is over. Given his time at Iowa as a player and coach, he would be a natural successor to Kirk Ferentz.
12/4 update: Diaco was a finalist for the Boston College job, which went to Temple head coach Steve Addazio.

Chris Petersen
Current Position:
Head Coach, Boise State
Age:
48
Overall record:
82-8
Salary:
$2 million
Buyout:
$750,000
Notable:
One of the finest coaches in the game, Petersen has led the Broncos to two BCS bowls and top 11 finishes in six of the past seven seasons.
Positives:
He is a master tactician and excels in player development. Even after losing several top assistants and most of the core players that went 50-3 over the last four seasons, Petersen again has the Broncos on the verge of a conference championship.
Negatives:
Petersen is going to command an enormous sum, probably in the neighborhood of $3 million a year, along with significant salaries for his assistants. He has personal and professional ties to Tedford and might feel awkward replacing him.

Hue Jackson
Current Position:
Assistant Coach, Cincinnati Bengals
Age:
47
Overall record:
8-8
Salary:
N/A
Buyout:
N/A
Notable:
A Cal assistant in 1996, Jackson had stints at three Pac-12 schools before plying his trade in the NFL.
Positives:
Jackson took the dysfunctional Oakland Raiders to a .500 record last season before being fired. He has a strong offensive background that would be enticing to recruits.
Negatives:
Jackson has not been around the college game since 2000. His strong personality might not mesh well with the current administration.
11/27 update: Jackson is making no secret of his interest in the Cal job, giving an interview with the Bay Area News Group praising the school's potential.

Charlie Strong
Current Position:
Head Coach, Louisville
Age:
52
Overall record:
23-14
Salary:
$2.3 million
Buyout:
N/A
Notable:
As Urban Meyer's defensive coordinator at Florida, Strong helped the Gators win two BCS titles, and now has the Cardinals in position to claim the Big East.
Positives:
Strong would bring a different pedigree and perspective to an offensively minded conference, and could recruit the elite personnel to slow down the likes of Oregon.
Negatives:
Strong is the hottest coaching candidate on the market, and will command top dollar. He never coached West of Texas and has no ties to the Pac-12.
12/4 update: Despite multiple reports that Strong is the preferred choice of Tennessee, Pat Forde of Yahoo wrote Tuesday that Louisville believes it is well-positioned to retain his services.

11/28 update: With Louisville now headed to the ACC in 2014, it seems more likely that Strong could stay with the Cardinals. The school has resources to match any contract offer, and has access to the upcoming college football playoff.


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