Narduzzi worried about Baylor, not HC jobs

As Michigan State prepares for the Cotton Bowl, the Spartans defensive coordinator deflected talk of head coaching jobs.

As is a bit of an annual tradition in the past couple offseasons, Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi is a name being mentioned with head coaching openings.

On Tuesday, Narduzzi said he is focused on the task at hand as Michigan State prepares to face Baylor in the Cotton Bowl on Jan. 1.

”We'll deal with things like that when it's time to,” he said. “The tempo of that offense is pretty darn good, so we've got to worry about that.”

After last season, Narduzzi reportedly was offered the job at Connecticut last season, but elected to return to East Lansing. This season, his name has been linked to openings such as Pittsburgh, which could open if Paul Chryst departs for Wisconsin. The latest job opening his name has been attached to is at Colorado State, according to Yahoo! Sports’ Pat Forde.

Narduzzi said such opportunities to move up the coaching ranks are a credit to success at Michigan State. Head coach Mark Dantonio said he does not pay attention to the way coaching jobs unfold and is not thinking about losing Narduzzi. He added a similar thought to Narduzzi, that it is part of being successful as a program.

”When you're successful as a program, that is the nature of it,” he said. “People want to say, how are they doing that at Michigan State? … They want to hire people like that, and I think that's a good problem to have. I think that's a good problem. Part of my job is to try to try to build opportunities for other people, whether it's players or whether it's coaches. So when those things happen, I think that's a positive for us.”

Specifically when it comes to Narduzzi, Dantonio said – as he has before – it is a matter of time before he becomes a head coach.

“When that point in time happens, it's going to be right for him and he's going to be prepared,” Dantonio said. “When that point in time happens, we've had this happen enough for us that we'll be prepared.”

So as he prepares to try and stop the top-ranked Baylor offense, Narduzzi is focused on just doing the same things as usual and not the future.

”The most important thing right now is our kids and winning this football game, really,” he said. “Those other things will come.”

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