Baylor head coach Matt Rhule has indicated to his coaching staff that he won’t be leaving for the NFL, where the Jets had interviewed him for their head coaching position, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.
The Jets wanted Rhule to agree to hire assistants the team’s front office would procure, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News (Twitter links). New York had concerns that Rhule, who has spent almost the entirety of his career in the college ranks, wouldn’t be able to form a staff. But Rhule had no interest in hiring coaches with whom he wasn’t familiar, per Mehta.
Besides a brief 2012 stint as the Giants’ offensive line coach, Rhule has spent the majority of his career in the NCAA. Rhule was head coach at Temple for four seasons, where he led the Owls to their only back-to-back 10-win seasons in school history. He joined Baylor in 2017 and didn’t see similar results, as the Bears finished with a 1-11 record during his first season. However, Baylor improved in 2018, finishing 7-6.
Despite his lack of an NFL track record, Rhule has been mentioned as an NFL head coaching candidate in the past. He interviewed for the Colts’ top job last offseason before Indianapolis selected Josh McDaniels as its initial head coach (before moving to Frank Reich once McDaniels spurned the club).
New York was the only NFL team known to be considering Rhule as a head coaching candidate, so it will need to move on to other candidates. As PFR’s Head Coaching Search Tracker indicates, Gang Green has interviewed a number of other coaches:
- Eric Bieniemy, offensive coordinator (Chiefs): Interviewed on 1/2
- Jim Caldwell, former head coach (Lions): Interviewed on 1/7
- Adam Gase, former head coach (Dolphins): Interviewed on 1/4
- Mike McCarthy, former head coach (Packers): Interviewed on 1/5
- Todd Monken, offensive coordinator (Buccaneers): Interviewed on 1/8
- Kris Richard, defensive backs coach (Cowboys): Interviewed on 1/6; no longer in running?
- Matt Campbell, head coach (Iowa State): Declined interview request
- Kliff Kingsbury, offensive coordinator (USC): Interviewed on 1/7
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