Now it appears that MSU will turn their attention towards Central Michigan University head coach Brian Kelly. A fact finding group is expected to be in attendance when Central Michigan plays Western Michigan this Friday night at Kelly/Shorts Stadium in Mt. Pleasant.
As for Mariucci, he was interested in talking to the MSU administration about the job and was intrigued by the possibility of teaming with Izzo to put MSU on top of the map in collegiate sports. However, once he returned to Los Angeles and was able to meet with his agent, Sandy Montag and his wife, Gayle, several obstacles began to mount.
Montag is of the belief that Mariucci will be a strong candidate for several openings in the NFL including, the expected opening in Arizona when the Cardinals are again floundering under Dennis Green. Ironically, Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Mike Martz appears to be Mariucci's main competition in Arizona. Mariucci could also be a candidate in Oakland.
That being the case, Mariucci admitted he would prefer the NFL to the grind of recruiting in collegiate sports against the likes of Michigan, Ohio State and Notre Dame. In addition, Mariucci's son, Tyler will be playing college football for Cal-Poly this fall and Dad was bothered by the fact that he missed several of his son's high school games.
In the end, family considerations and a desire to remain close to the Bay Area with his family were too much to overcome.
``Unfortunately because of the timing of the job and the situation and his family, Steve, I don't feel, will even be a candidate for the job," said Izzo following the MSU 45-34 win over Brown.
``He loves this place. His dad went to school here. But he has a family, and he has a situation where the timing of it, with losing the NFL job and still having something to prove there, the timing just isn't right for him."
Izzo admitted to being disappointed that the dream team pairing won't happen.
``"Some of it is hard for me. Some of it, I respect him greatly for it."
MSU will now turn its attention to information gathering on several candidates, CMU's Kelly, Georgia Tech defensive coordinator Jon Tenuta, a former defensive coordinator at Ohio State, Cleveland Browns defensive coordinator Todd Grantham and University of Michigan defensive coordinator Ron English.
On Wednesday, Butch Davis, who some thought was a candidate for the job, agreed to terms with the University of North Carolina to become its head football coach.