Week 1 Coaching Search Roundup: Rumors and Intel

Iowa State has moved to Day 5 of its search for a new football coach as the first week nears an end. With the search likely to heat up as the weekend ends, here's some intel and a look at the rumors.

  • Iowa State is nearing the end of Week 1 in its search for a new football coach, and the expectation is that the rumors and search will begin to pick up by the time the season comes to a close Saturday. There is speculation that Iowa State may have already begun interviews, and those should pick up after Saturday as coaches are freed up. 


  • Coaching speculation can run rampant and it's easy to throw speculation out there and see what sticks. While not much has leaked out of Iowa State's search, I've heard a few things: 1) Toledo head coach Matt Campbell has interest as does Georgia Southern coach Willie Fritz (which CBS Sports has reported), 2) Oregon offensive coordinator Scott Frost, who is said to be interested in the Syracuse job, has interest in Iowa State but it's uncertain if he's been contacted, 3) Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo would listen, though it might take a lot, including a strong offer, to lure him away from Navy. 


  • Two names I've found intriguing for Iowa State since the beginning, even when it was just speculation in recent weeks of whether Iowa State would need a new coach or not, are Utah State coach Matt Wells and Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck. Wells is a pretty good recruiter, especially among the JUCO ranks, and his brother, Luke, spent three years coaching at Iowa State. Fleck is a young, tenacious recruiter who has brought highly-rated classes to Western Michigan. I believe Iowa State will be gauging interest in both, and CycloneFanatic's Chris Williams said Thursday night that Fleck is, "gaining steam."


  • When it comes to Fleck, a big part of whether Iowa State could land him (in addition to their interest, obviously), is the competition. One job that could potentially affect Iowa State is the one just east at Illinois. Many names will be crossovers, but especially Fleck and Northern Illinois coach Rod Carey. So, what's the latest at Illinois, a school that still doesn't have an athletics director? Well, it's conflicting. The Chicago Tribune says that interim coach Bill Cubit could be extended a 2-year offer while Football Scoop says sources at Illinois don't expect that to happen. More should be known by Sunday, one day after the regular season finale. 


  • Speaking of Football Scoop, the site reported Wednesday that a name to watch at Iowa State is first-year Buffalo coach Lance Leipold. The speculation has drawn various responses. Some fans aren't all that enthusiastic about the possibility. Others see Leipold, who went 109-6 in the Division III ranks, as an intriguing candidate who is also a proven winner. It remains to be seen how interested Iowa State might be. 

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