The next coach rumored to be on Ward Manuals list is Bryan Harsin. While Harsin has not been a name that came up until Gill made his official decision the fact he is on the staff of not just a successful mid-major but a team which has made it to two BCS bowls this decade has to move him towards the front of the line.
Harsin is, or is going to be, on a lot of list in coming years (if nobody snatches him up this season). He has quietly been moving up the ladder at an elite program and I am both surprised and impressed if Manual is really going to pursue him.
* * *
Harsin was a lettered player at Boise State (QB) from 1995 to 1999, he was there for the rise of the Boise State football program as we know it today. His final season culminated with their championship 10-3 season and their victory in the Humanitarian Bowl. Harsin graduated a year later and would become the running backs coach for Eastern Oregon (Division III).
It was not long before Harsin found himself again at Boise, this time as the tight ends coach (The Boise offensive system makes significant use of the tight end position) He was later promoted to the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2005 when Peterson took over the Bronco's.
As a coordinator Harnish has put together an offense which would dominate the Western Athletic Conference. While he has been in control of the offense Boise has finished the regular season undefeated three times. (2006, 2008, 2009)
Coach Harsin has also shown an eye for Talent, he had a hand in the recruitment and development of this years Heisman hopeful Kellen Moore who was the only true freshman ever to start for the Bronco's (2008). This season he was nominate for the Broyles Award (bets assistant coach in the nation) .
The Pluses for Harsin:
- Nice name to drop for recruits
- Has been a position coach for several key positions (TE, QB, RB)
- Has helped develop a solid offensive system
- Good eye for talent
The Minuses for Harsin:
- No connection to UB, or the MAC
- Little experience recruiting on the east coast
- No experience as a head coach, at any level
Would he be a good hire for UB?
It depends on who his staff would be. I have little doubt he would be a fine head coach but it would be a shame for UB to have to rebuild the recruiting relationships that Gill has spent the past three years developing. If Danny Barrett or Fred Reed would stay on staff (or if he were to bring in a staff that already had some strong recruiting ties in UB's current footprint) he would be a great hire.
Up Next: Erik Campbell