Iowa State assistant head coach Bill Bleil has applied for the head coaching vacancy at the University of North Dakota, a source close to Bleil confirmed to AllCyclones.com on Thursday.
KFGO in Fargo was the first to report the news, citing job applications obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.
Bleil has served on Iowa State's coaching staff since 2009, making the switch this season from offensive line coach to tight ends coach while continuing to serve as assistant head coach.
Iowa State announced two firings on Sunday, the day after the 3-9 season concluded, parting ways with offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham and running backs coach Kenith Pope.
Tight end E.J. Bibbs, under Bleil's hand, finished 10th in FBS in receptions by a tight end in his first year at Iowa State after transferring from Arizona Western.
A source close to Bleil said he was "very interested in the North Dakota opportunity."
In a Thursday phone conversation with AllCyclones.com, North Dakota athletics director Brian Faison could neither confirm nor deny Bleil's application, recommending such questions be made to Human Resources, but said the program would accept applications until Dec. 10.
Asked about the benefits of hiring an applicant from a BCS school with 25-plus years of coaching experience, Faison said, "I don't think there's any question when you can have a candidate that comes from a high-profile school. The real key is can they recruit in our area, the Upper Midwest and around the country?"
Faison said he wasn't particular about which side of the ball his next coach come from.
"I think you want the best overall fit, offense or defense is not that important because they'll balance it out with their staff," Faison said.
Faison said he had never met Bleil but was aware of his work and resume.
Division I North Dakota, which competes in the FCS as a member of the Big Sky Conference, fired head coach Chris Mussman after a 3-8 record in 2013 to cap a 31-34 record during six seasons.