By Stephen Diener
The Mark Richt era is officially over in Miami and the Manny Diaz era has begun. And with his first hire as the Hurricanes 25th head coach in school history, he decided to bring on Louisiana Tech’s Blake Baker as the teams new defensive coordinator. Baker took over the spot at Tech in 2015 when Diaz left the position there and now takes over for him again, this time with Diaz as his boss.
Now that it’s done, it is time to look at what needs to be done next. Most namely and probably most desperately, offense. Diaz needs to hit a home run on his next hire, which will most likely be for the offensive coordinator position.
Rumors have swirled that he is looking to bring in former UNC head man, Larry Fedora. Another name that has been floated around social media is Major Applewhite, the now former Houston coach who just got fired last week. One name that I have not heard about too much yet and should be considered the front runner in my mind is the former Texas Tech coach Cliff Kingsbury.
Now, yes I know that Kingsbury has already been hired at USC to be their OC, but with the news coming out today that he is now being considered for NFL coaching jobs, wouldn’t it seem that he is still open to changing his mind?
Kingsbury would bring that type of offensive explosion identity that the Canes so sorely lacked over the past few years and more. Quite simply, they have fallen behind the rest of the college football world in the way that they run their offense and Kingsbury would be the type of guy that could catch them up with the rest of the landscape real quick.
As far as culture and locker presence goes, he is the right guy for the job, he is a born and raised Miami guy. His father was the Mayor and he grew up loving the U. The players love and respect him, made evident by guys like Shaq Quarterman returning for his senior season. He knows the culture and knows how to recruit South Florida because he is South Florida.
But, Diaz also knows that they need to have a complete offensive identity overhaul, the question is how will he fix that? The next hire he makes could shape the landscape of this program and his tenure for the next few years.
Choose wisely Manny.