Coaches to Watch this fall Part 4: Current Offensive Coordinators
Since everyone has Spaz on the Hotseat List, now is as good a time as any to look at future BC head coaching candidates. Unlike our past profile series, the timing and style on these posts will be a little different. Instead of being weeks or days away from a potential change, we have the benefit of a whole season to evaluate these guys. Some stocks will rise, while others will fall and it will make our usual scoreboard watching that much more interesting.
The natural inclination would be for BC to replace Spaz with an offensive guy. Unfortunately there is not a great pool of candidates among current college offensive coordinators. There are plenty of good coordinators, but I don't know how many are ready to be head coaches or coach at a place like BC. These are some of the more prominent names. After the 2012 season, we'll have a better idea of if they are ready to take on an FBS head coaching job.
Offensive Coordinator, Clemson
Chad Morris was coaching high school football three years ago. His meteoric rise to Clemson's playcaller is another example of how much college football has changed. Gus Malzahn and guys like Chip Kelly and Art Briles before him shot from relative obscurity to changing college football within a few season. Pedigree and climbing the ladders doesn't mean as much anymore. All that matters is how you score and Morris showed that he could give new life to Clemson's attack. Like the others mentioned Morris emphasized tempo and a no huddle. His track record is impressive, as is his reputation for teaching and implementing this offense.
What to Watch for in 2012: Can Clemson keep it up? The ACC now has a chance to adjust to his scheme. It will also be interested to know what Morris wants to do. All these guys want to be head coaches, but is he willing to roll the dice on a job like BC? Would he even fit in? BC's very different from coaching high school in west Texas.
Offensive Coordinator, Wisconsin
The Badgers have been a good proving ground for coordinators. I like the fit for BC since Wisconsin tends to develop and recruit like we do. They also have run "pro style" offenses with an emphasis on OL and the running attacks. Canada will be new there this fall, but he's got BCS experience and led explosive offenses in the MAC too. If Canada became a candidate for BC, I would have hesitation about his time at Indiana. They threw it a ton while he was calling plays but didn't win much.
What to Watch in 2012: Will Canada keep throwing it at the more conservative Wisconsin? If Wisconsin keeps up their recent success will he emerge as a candidate elsewhere?
Offensive Coordinator, Virginia
Lazor's been a good coordinator at Virginia. He's not changing the game but they've been better than they were before he got there and they've been consistent. Lazor's ACC experience -- especially at a school like UVA -- translates well to BC (as it did for TOB years ago). He can also sell his NFL ties to recruits. He played at Cornell and is from Scranton, so geography and academics wouldn't be an issue.
What to Watch for in 2012: How will UVA handle their pending QB controversy. Will they also move up within the ACC or stay middle of the pack offensively?
Offensive Coordinator, Alabama
Nussmeier moves from Washington to being the playcaller at the Defending National Champions. He's got a good profile for a rising coach in that he played professionally, coached in college, the NFL and Canada, and is now at an elite program. He runs a pro-style west coast offense, so the transition to BC would be relatively easy. Nussmeier lacks any obvious ties to BC or the northeast.
What to Watch in 2012: How will Nussmeier adjust to the pressure cooker of Saban and Alabama? Saban's offensives have been bland but effective. I expect more of the same this year. It doesn't make for compelling football but working for Saban can be good training for future head coaches.