Several websites are now confirming the widely held suspicion that Jeff Tedford is to be named the next head coach of the Fresno State Bulldogs.
Tedford has been out of college football coaching since the Cal Golden Bears let him go following the 2012 season. He’s spent the last year working with Chris Petersen and the Washington Huskies as a consultant and has earned praise for his work in supporting Jonathan Smith and the Husky offense. The Huskies are currently second in the nation in scoring offense, first in TDs scored, first in team passer rating, and first (by a wide margin) on TD-to-completion ratio with a stunning 1 TD pass for every 4.2 completions.
This hire represents a bit of a homecoming; Tedford both played and coached at Fresno State in his earlier years. He will have the opportunity to stay close to his west coast roots and to rebuild his reputation as an offensive innovator with a Bulldog team that has fallen on hard times. The Bulldogs are currently 1-9 under interim head coach and former UW offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau. Former coach Tim DeRuyter, who was once a candidate for UW’s football job prior the Steve Sarkisian hiring, was let go last month.
Husky fans will wonder if there might be a hangover on the offense as a result of the coming transition. In his current role, Tedford is not allowed to have contact with players and does not participate in recruiting. Fallout should be minimal, though it remains to be seen if Tedford will continue his consulting role in any capacity as the Huskies look to finish the season and move into the college football playoffs. It will be interesting to see if any underclassmen or graduate transfers might look to a familiar face this offseason. Of even more interest will be whether Tedford attempts to hire any current UW assistants for bigger roles on his Fresno State staff.
The hiring of Tedford at Fresno State fills one of the five open FBS jobs. The others are:
Baylor: formerly Art Briles, Jim Grobe interim
FIU: formerly Ron Turner, Ron Cooper interim
LSU: formerly Les Miles, Ed Orgeron interim
Purdue: formerly Darrell Hazell, Gerad Parker interim