Tag:Mario Cristobal
Posted on: January 30, 2012 5:39 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2012 11:16 pm
 

Rutgers assistant Kyle Flood accepts HC job

Posted by Chip Patterson

Rutgers offensive line coach Kyle Flood has accepted an offer be the next Scarlet Knights' head coach, sources tell CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy.

Flood was initially named the interim head coach following Greg Schiano's departure to become the next head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccanneers. He has served on the Scarlet Knights' coaching staff as offensive line coach since 2005.  The Scarlet Knights have only had one losing season since Flood joined the staff, and have gone 5-1 in bowl appearances.  

According to The Star-Ledger, the Rutgers Board of Governors has a call scheduled for noon Tuesday. Flood is expected to be announced in a news conference later in the day.
  
As the interim head coach, Flood has been able to continue recruiting efforts up until the final dead period before National Signing Day. While some recruits - like UCLA commit Devin Fuller - have turned elsewhere after Schiano's departure, Flood's promotion will hopefully secure the rest of a strong Scarlet Knights recruiting class.

Earlier on Monday, it was widely reported that FIU head coach Mario Cristobal was set to return to Rutgers and take the job. However, CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy and Bruce Feldman debunked those rumors. The two sides were unable to reach an agreement on terms, and Cristobal - happy with his current situation at FIU - is looking forward to coaching the Panthers in 2012.

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Posted on: January 30, 2012 10:25 am
Edited on: January 30, 2012 4:58 pm
 

Rutgers talks fall through; Cristobal to stay put

Posted by Chip Patterson

UPDATE: CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy reports that Rutgers and FIU head coach Mario Cristobal were never on the same page with regard to possible contract terms, and Cristobal will remain with the Panthers.  Scarlet Knights' interim head coach Kyle Flood expected to "be the beneficiary" of the fallout.



With National Signing Day rapidly approaching, Rutgers athletic director Tim Pernetti has been on the move to try and replace head coach Greg Schiano as quickly as possible. Pernetti has already interviewed multiple candidates for the job, reportedly including interim head coach/offensive line coach Kyle Flood, Temple head coach Steve Addazio, and FIU's Mario Cristobal.

Tom Luicci, of The Star-Ledger, reported that Cristobal spoke with the Rutgers athletic director on Sunday. Pernetti reportedly requested and received permission from FIU to speak with Cristobal, which a person with knowledge of the search process said "went well." Multiple reports from Philadelphia indicate that Steve Addazio plans to stay put at Temple, narrowing Rutgers' apparent wish-list to Flood and Cristobal.

When Pernetti addressed the media after Schiano's departure on Thursday, the athletic director indicated his intentions to have a new head coach named no later than Wednesday - National Signing Day. Rutgers has already lost out in-state athlete Devin Fuller, who said on Sunday Schano's decision to leave "made a big difference" in his choosing UCLA over the Scarlet Knights.

Defensive end Darius Hamilton, one of New Jersey's top in-state recruit, plans to make his announcement on Tuesday night. One would assume Pernetti hopes to have his coach in place in time for Hamilton to make his decision. With the dead period now in place until Wednesday, the only best way to end uncertainty is make headlines with a coaching hire.

Cristobal is one of the hottest rising coaches in college football, taking over the FIU program in 2007 after spending time on Schiano's staff at Rutgers (2001-2003) and Larry Coker's staff at Miami (2004-2006). Cristobal led the Panthers to their first winning season in program history in 2010, winning the Sun Belt Championship and the Little Caesars Bowl. FIU finished 8-5 in 2011, falling to Marshall in the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl.

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Posted on: January 26, 2012 12:14 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2012 2:22 pm
 

With Greg Schiano gone, what next for Rutgers?

Posted by Chip Patterson

Tampa Bay's hiring of Rutgers' head coach Greg Schiano is close to official, and now the Scarlet Knights are left with a short window of time to identify the head coach for 2012.

CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman suggested Miami Dolphins special teams' coach Darren Rizzi as one possible candidate to step in for the Scarlet Knights. Rizzi served on Schiano's staff from 2002-2007 before a one-year stint as the Rhode Island head coach, where Rizzi played played tight end from 1988-1991. Delaware head coach KC Keeler has led the Blue Hens to three I-AA/FCS Championship Games and could be ready for his first opportunity at the FBS level if the Scarlet Knights want more head coaching experience.

Other possible replacements could include Notre Dame defensive coordinator Bobby Diaco - New Jersey native - or Miami defensive coordinator Mark D'Onofrio, Rutgers' linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator 2001-2003.

One popular name, for any job really, is Florida International head coach Mario Cristobal. Cristobal was a tight ends and offensive line coach under Schiano, and likely will be at the top of Rutgers' wish list. He was reportedly a leading candidate to replace Todd Graham at Pittsburgh in December, before chose to stick with FIU.

The timing is brutal for Rutgers' recruiting, less than a week before National Signing Day. Schiano had assembled a strong recruiting class, and the Scarlet Knights were still on the board for several highly-touted prospects. Additionally, the athletic department may be facing an uphill battle financially when it comes to luring top coaching talent. Last July, USA Today reported that the school used nearly $27 million in university and student-fee money to balance the athletic budget. No other NCAA Division I school came close to Rutgers' subsidies.

For more details on Schiano's new gig with the Bucs, check out our NFL counterparts at the Eye On Football

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Posted on: December 21, 2011 11:13 pm
Edited on: December 21, 2011 11:13 pm
 

Report: FIU working on extension for Cristobal

Posted by Tom Fornelli

On Wednesday night it was reported that Wisconsin offensive coordinator Paul Chryst had become the frontrunner to land the Pitt job. News that was somewhat surprising because FIU's Mario Cristobal had been rumored to be the lead candidate for the position. Well, we may now know why Cristobal's name suddenly dropped from the discussion.

According to the Miami Herald, FIU has been working to sign Cristobal to an extension. In fact, the paper calls them "aggressive negotiations." While I try to get the image of members of FIU's athletic department literally punching Cristobal in the face with contract offers, it should be pointed out that Cristobal did just get an extension from the school earlier this year.

That extension lasts through 2016.

While there's no word on how long this latest extension will be, it's pretty clear that Cristobal is a coach FIU values and really wants to keep around for as long as possible. And it's hard to blame them for it.

The program has only been around for a decade, and its rise under Cristobal has been remarkable. The Panthers won the Sun Belt Conference last season and finished the year with a win over Toledo in the Little Caesar's Bowl. While 2011 wasn't as successful, the Panthers still did reach a bowl game for the second consecutive season, losing to Marshall in the Beef O'Brady Bowl on Tuesday night.

Combine all that with 19 of 22 starters returning in 2012, and it's easy to see why FIU wants Cristobal around.
Posted on: December 21, 2011 9:27 pm
Edited on: December 22, 2011 9:55 am
 

Pittsburgh hires Wisconsin's Paul Chryst

Posted by Tom Fornelli

It appears we are getting close to Pitt finding a replacement for Todd Graham after Graham left the school to take over at Arizona State.

An Associated Press source with knowledge of the decision says Pittsburgh has hired Wisconsin offensive coordinator Paul Chryst to be the next head football coach.  This confirms a report in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from Wednesday night, as well as several other outlets with sources close to the program. 

The Post-Gazette report says that the two sides are still working on a contract agreement, and that an official announcement could come in the next day or two. Which, we'll admit, leaves a bit of wiggle room. It wouldn't be the first contract negotiation to go horribly awry.

It had been reported earlier in the week that FIU's Mario Cristobal was the frontrunner for the job with Chryst in second place, but it seems that has changed for now. Chryst also interviewed at Pitt last January before the school decided to hire Todd Graham.

Graham took the Pittsburgh head coaching job 11 months ago preaching character, commitment and a "high octane" offense designed to take the Big East by storm.

What was high-octane was watching Pittsburgh quarterback Tino Sunseri dodge pass rush from the opposition.  The Panthers allowed 57 sacks this season, easily the most in the FBS, and Graham enraged the Pitt fan base by shifting blame from himself to Sunseri.

Chryst, a former Wisconsin quarterback, has built one of the Big Ten's most dominant offensive units since joining the Badgers' coaching staff in 2005.  This season, the Badgers' led the Big Ten in total offense with 466.9 yards per game and the unit has finished in the top three of that same category every season since 2007.   



Posted on: December 21, 2011 12:30 am
 

QUICK HITS: Beef O'Brady's Bowl

Posted by Adam Jacobi

MARSHALL WON. The Marshall Thundering Herd capitalized on multiple FIU miscues in the fourth quarter, and Marshall came away with a 20-10 victory. Rakeem Cato had a productive second half and finished with 224 yards passing and two touchdowns through the air for Marshall, and FIU was held to just 246 yards of offense on the day.

HOW MARSHALL WON: Marshall had six blocked punts coming into this game, so let's make it seven. Zach Dunston blocked a punt in the fourth quarter and were it not for a litany of penalties after the block, he would have scored a touchdown on the recovery. As it was, Marshall stayed close enough to the end zone to kick a go-ahead field goal with under six minutes left, and that was enough to take the lead for good.

WHEN MARSHALL WON: After Marshall's go-ahead field goal, FIU still had more than enough time to drive down the field, but T.Y. Hilton coughed up the football -- his second fumble of the day -- and Marshall recovered near midfield. The Thundering Herd would hang onto the ball until there was under a minute to play ... at which point Cato reared back on a 4th and 5 on the FIU 35 and found Aaron Dobson for a long touchdown pass to seal the win. Yes, Marshall called a deep pass play on 4th down with a 3-point lead to protect. That is play-calling con gusto.

WHAT MARSHALL WON: Marshall was widely regarded as the worst bowl team of the 70 with bids this year, so coming away from the Beef O'Brady's Bowl with a win anyway is a major plus for Doc Holliday and the program. Rakeem Cato came on strong and still has three years of eligibility left, so Marshall fans ought to be pleased with having their QB situation settled until 2014.

WHAT FIU LOST: It stinks to see T.Y. Hilton be such a big part of the offense in his final game, only to have him fumble away the team's last shot at scoring. But really, what's more important than even this game itself is whether FIU loses Mario Cristobal to Pittsburgh or if Pitt goes in a different direction. Cristobal's not the only person capable of winning at FIU, in all likelihood, but he is literally the only person to be head coach of FIU thus far, and undoubtedly the FIU brass would prefer Cristobal stays home for as long as possible.

THAT WAS CRAZY: On the final play of the game, Marshall defensive lineman Marques Aiken and FIU offensive lineman Giancarlo Revilla engaged in some extracurricular activity, including Revilla tearing off Aiken's helmet and Aiken throwing at least one punch at Revilla. Guys, guys, guys. Please don't have beef with each other. Beef has no place in the Beef O'Brady's Bowl!

FINAL GRADE: C-. Sloppy play abounded in this game, and only the late touchdown throw by Cato saved this mess of a game from getting into D-level territory. 



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Posted on: December 20, 2011 9:48 am
Edited on: December 20, 2011 1:22 pm
 

Report: FIU's Cristobal is 'frontrunner' for Pitt

Posted by Chip Patterson

Pittsburgh's search to replace Todd Graham as the head football coach has slowed since the weekend's interviews, possibly because school officials are waiting for a response from the reported frontrunner: Florida International head coach Mario Cristobal.

Paul Zeise, of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, reports that Cristobal emerged from the weekend as the leading candidate to become the next Panthers football coach, but asked the school to hold off any further discussions until after FIU's bowl game. Cristobal's Golden Panthers squad will make its second-straight postseason appearance against Marshall in the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl on Tuesday night.

Cristobal interviewed with the school last week, but the Panthers have back-up plans if the Miami native chooses to stay put with the Golden Panthers. Ohio State defensive coordinator -- and interim coach for 2011 -- Luke Fickell as well as Wisconsin offensive coordinator Paul Chryst are the other known candidates for the vacant position. The report in the Gazette cited a source close to one of those candidates that suggested Pitt was "waiting for something" before moving forward. It is believed the school will wait for the completion of Tuesday's bowl game before gauging the interest of Cristobal.

No formal offers have been made by the school to any candidates, but all three would fit the mold Pittsburgh is looking for in their next coach. Of course, the Panthers thought Todd Graham fit that mold as well, but the most high-octane aspect from Graham's time in Pittsburgh was the speed of his exit. The school is looking for a coach to re-energize the storied program that has only claimed a share of two conference titles since 1980.

Defensive coordinator Keith Patterson will serve as the interim head coach when the Panthers face SMU in the BBVA Compass Bowl on Jan. 7 in Birmingham.

Get set for Mario Cristobal and FIU's showdown in Tuesday's Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl against Marshall at the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl Pregame

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Posted on: December 19, 2011 7:05 pm
Edited on: December 19, 2011 8:33 pm
 

Keys to the Game: Beef O'Brady's Bowl

Posted by Adam Jacobi

FIU WILL WIN IF: T.Y. Hilton has one more big game in him. Hilton, the multi-talented wideout and return specialist, caught 64 passes for 950 yards and seven touchdowns in 2011. Once you add in rushes and returns, Hilton registered 104 total touches for 1749 all-purpose yards and eight scores. That works out to 8.66 touches, 145.75 yards, and .66 TDs per game for the electric senior.

In FIU's four losses, however, Hilton's production drops considerably; he touched the ball 5.75 times for 102 all-purpose yards per game, and scored two touchdowns in those four games. In fact, Hilton's stats were substantially lower in every single measurable category in those four losses except kick return average; there, Hilton's YPR jumps all the way from 32.0 to 33.75. So the message here is clear: get the ball in Hilton's hands, or leave the Beef O'Brady's Bowl disappointed. And nobody likes to associate Beef O'Brady's with disappointment, now, do they?

MARSHALL WILL WIN IF: Vinny Curry gets loose. Marshall may be 6-6, but there are a few pretty decent wins hidden in there: 26-20 over Southern Miss, 17-14 at Louisville, and even 24-20 over a 4-8 Rice team that faced a ferocious schedule. One of those most consistent factors in those wins -- and just about all of them -- was Curry. Curry trailed only Houston's Sammy Brown in sacks and tackles for loss in the C-USA this year; indeed, Brown and Curry were 1-2 in the nation in tackles for loss. What's more, in the Herd's six wins, Curry was even more dominant: 13.5 TFLs, 9.0 sacks, four forced fumbles, and two blocked kicks. Those rates -- 2.25 TFL and 1.50 sacks per game -- would be enough to lead the nation if he had maintained them in the Herd's six losses as well. He didn't, of course, so it's going to be crucial for Marshall to get that level of production out of its senior DE one last time. 

X-FACTOR: Mario Cristobal's status. FIU's celebrated coach, who has essentially been the architect of Golden Panther football, has been mentioned as a potential candidate for multiple BCS-level football programs. And while it's unlikely that Cristobal would take a new job that would require him to abandon his team in the 24 hours leading up to the Beef O'Brady's Bowl, it is also the case that Cristobal's time spent in consideration of a new coaching destination is time not spent on game preparation for the Marshall game. Exactly how much effect the distraction of job talks has on FIU's preparation -- if any at all -- remains to be seen, but FIU fans and administrators looking forward to the Golden Panthers' second straight bowl win can't be thrilled that Cristobal is conducting these talks before his team's season is officially over.



Check out all the latest updates on FIU and Marshall right up until kickoff at the Beef O'Brady's Bowl Pregame.

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com