Gary Andersen is out as head football coach at Oregon State. The 3rd year head coach and the Beavs mutually parted ways on Monday.
What does it mean?
Well first off, OSU is off the hook for the over $12 million left on Andersen’s contract, as he decided to leave on his own. The value of that decision for Oregon State can not be understated. The often cash strapped university won’t have to worry about paying Andersen while also paying whoever runs the show in 2018 and beyond.
Secondly for the second time in 3 years OSU will be looking for a new face to lead the Beavs. This time around they will be utilizing a search firm, which can start contacting coaches agents and gauge interest while Scott Barnes and President Ray whittle down their list of candidates.
Who is it gonna be? Who knows, but we decided to put a list of names that have been thrown out over the past 24 hours.
Beau Baldwin- Cal OC
Over the past 24 hours or so the former EWU coach and current Cal OC has become my top pick for the job. After years of FCS success in the northwest, his “do more with less” brand of coaching would be a great fit in Corvallis. He was originally interviewed for the post when Mike Riley skipped town, and I tend to wonder if he would have been the hire had Andersen not fallen into our laps. At this point if I had to bet on who will be the next leader in Corvallis Baldwin would be the odd on favorite.
Jonathan Smith- UW OC
The OSU legend and leader of the Fiesta Bowl Beavers has been toiling around the assistant coaching ranks for a number of years. Following the conclusion of his career he was a grad assistant under both Erickson and Riley before heading to Idaho as the QB coach and eventually hooking up with Chris Peterson in Boise. The current Washington offensive coordinator has been thought of as an up an coming coach for a number of years, and is bound to land a head coaching job soon. Would it be risky? Sure, but at this point I think OSU needs to take chance.
Mike Bobo- Colorado State Head Coach
Remember him? His team started of this disappointing season with a 57-28 drubbing of the Beavs. I don’t know whether or not he would be interested in leaving CSU for Corvallis, or if he has his eyes on a more prominent job, but would definitely be worth a Scott Barnes phone call to the highly regarded offensive minded coach.
Bronco Mendenhall- Virginia Head Coach
When Mike Riley left for Lincoln, Nebraska, my personal top choice was OSU alum and at that time BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall. Having both played and coached in Corvallis, and having had a good bit of success at BYU (also not an easy place to win), Mendenhall seemed like a good fit for the Beavs. Fast forward 3 years, and he now holds a 6-11 record at Virginia after two seasons, and I’m not nearly as sold on him. I would still expect Scott Barnes to reach out, but I’m not sure how I’d feel about this hire now.
Chip Kelly- ESPN Analyst
Hahaha. Ok this ain’t gonna happen... right? To be honest I am not even 100% sure how I would feel about this. While I believe Chip would still be a good college coach, I’m not sure he can ever replicate that perfect storm he walked into at Oregon that helped him lead them to perennial contender status. The only part of this hire that I am sure I would like is the absolute trolling of duck fans that would ensue.
Cory Hall- OSU Interim Coach
Probably not, but the players love him and recruits love him, and if he were somehow able to turn this season around in short order he would have to at least get some consideration from Scott Barnes.
Alex Grinch- WSU DC
The defensive coordinator at WSU was a name I hadn’t really thought of until I saw this article from CougCenter. The up and coming defensive coordinator seems bound to leave for a bigger better job at some point, and having had success in Pullman lends well to success in Corvallis... I think.
Ken Niumatalolo- Navy HC
His name has been thrown out for several openings over the past few years, including the BYU job which seemed to be his for the taking, before he turned it down and Kalani Sitake was hired. It’s unclear whether he wants to leave Navy, or whether he would want to bring the triple-option with him if he does, but having success at a school with some inherent recruiting disadvantages lends me to believe he could have success in Corvallis.
Troy Calhoun- Air Force HC
Very similar to Niumatalolo. A successful stint at a service academy will have his name in the rumor mill for many openings this offseason. Calhoun does have connections to the state, as he was born in McMinnville before moving to Roseburg, and eventually playing under legendary Oregon High School coach Thurman Bell.
Jedd Fisch -UCLA OC
Can he sneak Josh Rosen out with him?
Jimmy Lake- UW DC
The engineer of the defense that only allowed OSU to cross the 50 yard line twice earlier this season will have his name tossed around in plenty of coaching searches. While I am hopeful that the Beavs get a offensive minded coach, stealing a top flight DC from a northwest rival would be a win in itself.
Les Miles- Grass Eater
The Mad Hatter doesn’t fit the “young offensive minded coach” mold that I think Scott Barnes should chase, but he would be interesting. He had a track record of success at LSU and seemed to get the raw end of the deal on his departure. At the very least he would make for spectacular post game press conferences.
Mike Leach- WSU Head Coach
Ok this isn’t an even remote possibility, but friggin eh I want a coach that’s gonna retweet my dumb twitter jokes like he recently did with this tweet from our friends over at CougCenter.
realizing you're the little brother in the northwest like pic.twitter.com/Z4uGYPxcKV— CougCenter (@CougCenter) October 8, 2017
Mike Riley- Nebraska Head Coach
A name that will half-heartedly and somewhat lazily get thrown out there a lot over the next few weeks. There is a decent chance this is his last year in Lincoln, and while I am a big fan of his (I am currently working on an article about his under-appreciated time in Corvallis) I don’t think this would be a good hire.
Jeff Tedford-Fresno State Head Coach
Meh... I mean he did well at Cal and has northwest connections, but I’m not sure this moves the needle for Beaver Nation.
Is the next OSU head coach on this list? I have no idea. Mike Riley wasn’t on anyone’s list for Nebraska and Gary Andersen sure wasn’t on anyone’s list for OSU. One thing is for certain, it will be an interesting few weeks in Corvallis. Drop a comment below and tell us who you want on the sidelines next year.