The University of Massachusetts will join the FBS and the MAC conference starting in 2012, and they are looking for a new head coach to lead them into that transition. Looking at coaches who have history with UMass, we found some solid names who were at one time the head coach for the Minutemen. Browns QB coach Mark Whipple, UConn defensive coordinator Don Brown, and Virginia defensive coordinator Jim Reid all had stints as the HC at UMass. While I would typically look past anyone who has been a head coach at the school in the past, each of the three had a winning record as head coach and have gone on to solid careers as assistants since. If any of the three, Whipple seems to be the most realistic possibility. In addition, I did come across one intriguing name that would fit quite well into the high scoring MAC:
Neal Brown - Texas Tech Offensive Coordinator
- Played at UMass in 2001-02 after transferring from Kentucky, where he played for head coach Hal Mumme.
- After his playing career, he stayed on the UMass staff as the tight ends and assistant offensive line coach.
We also looked into the anticipated opening at Akron. Unfortunately, we weren't able to find many head coach ready candidates who we could link back to the Zips. We did find one possibility that seems very reasonable:
Luke Fickell - Ohio State Interim Head Coach
- Was the defensive line coach at Akron in 2000 and '01.
- It's looking more and more everyday like Fickell will not have a chance to be OSU's permanent head coach, so he would be making the choice between head coach at Akron or probably being retained as linebackers coach at Ohio State.