Notre Dame Offensive Coordinator Search: 3 Leaders Emerge
A week after Tommy Rees made the decision to leave Notre Dame to become Alabama’s offensive coordinator, it appears Marcus Freeman and Ron Powlus are progressing to finding a replacement. After some internet rumors proved to be untrue earlier in the week, it appears to be a three-man race.
Football Scoop has been all over this story like they almost always are with coaching news and gave an update Thursday evening. They had previously named two of the three emerging candidates as being vetted while adding at least one other Power Five offensive coordinator was also discussed, but didn’t give a name. The third of the three fits that mold.
Here are the key details from the latest Football Scoop report:
Vetted List of More Than 10
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According to the Football Scoop report, “sources indicated Freeman had “communicated with” more than 10 potential coordinators”.
The wording here is obviously key. It speaks a lot more to Freeman taking a phone call from a candidate(s) that reached out, not so much that Freeman had 10 or more names he immediately began discussions with. This would reflect the way the Byron Leftwich news was reported.
3 Leaders Emerge
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Freeman and Notre Dame have been in contact with three potential offensive coordinators significantly more than anyone else. Here are the three named by Football Scoop:
“Colorado play-caller Sean Lewis, Utah’s Andy Ludwig and Kansas State’s Collin Klein are the candidates who have received the most extensive attention from the Irish, per sources with direct knowledge among multiple involved parties.”
Sean Lewis Update
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Football Scoop previously mentioned that Colorado offensive coordinator Sean Lewis “is seen as a potentially top-priority target for the Irish.” The new report makes clear that Lewis is very much in the running.
Lewis had the first in-depth interactions with the Irish staff. Sources indicated that Lewis not only spoke with Freeman but also had direct interactions with the Notre Dame offensive staff.
Collin Klein Update
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After previously mentioning that Notre Dame was vetting another unnamed Power Five offensive coordinator we now have a name to that report. The name is Kansas State offensive coordinator Collin Klein and he’s clearly been able to make a strong impression.
Klein was in South Bend, Indiana, both Wednesday evening and into Thursday before flying back to Kansas State, where the former Wildcats’ star quarterback has spent the past half-dozen seasons on the coaching staff for multiple head coaches.
Andy Ludwig Update
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Based off the wording of their previous report, Football Scoop seemed to speak volumes essentially through silence about Notre Dame’s pursuit of the Utah offensive coordinator. Football Scoop states that Notre Dame and Ludwig have had more than just a brief conversation.
Notre Dame also has had direct talks with Utah’s Andy Ludwig, sources in the Pac-12 and around college football told FootballScoop, and the Irish likewise vetted Ludwig to the point that former Ludwig colleagues were contacted.
A Leader Among the 3?
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It doesn’t go as far to name Klein as the leader but Football Scoop’s report certainly makes it clear that Notre Dame is more than just doing a man who shares an agent with Marcus Freeman a favor.
Yet Big 12 sources late Thursday told FootballScoop that the Irish’s personal interactions with Klein were the deepest, from Klein’s interactions with Freeman to his time talking football with Notre Dame’s offensive coaching staff.
Learn More About All Three
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Here at Fighting Irish Wire we’ve been trying to best prepare Notre Dame fans with knowledge of potential new offensive coordinators. You can learn more about the resumes of all three of the named candidates above by visiting the following links:
Potential Offensive Coordinator Resumes:
Sean Lewis – Colorado Offensive Coordinator
Collin Klein – Kansas State Offensive Coordinator
Andy Ludwig – Utah Offensive Coordinator
Story originally appeared on Fighting Irish Wire