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Cooper thinking about a return to the Big-10?


Sober as Sarkisian
Staff member
Tech Admin
Dayton Daily News

Cooper interested in IU job
Ex-OSU football coach misses work

INDIANAPOLIS | Former Ohio State football coach John Cooper is one of three high-profile, out-of-work coaches to express interest in Indiana's vacant football coaching job.

Cooper, as well as David Cutcliffe and Frank Solich, told The Associated Press that they missed the profession and would consider returning to the sidelines, possibly in Bloomington. None of the three, however, said they had been contacted by Indiana athletic director Rick Greenspan.

Indiana spokesman Pete Rhoda said the school does not comment on any candidates.

Cooper, who went 111-43-4 in 13 seasons at Ohio State, spent this year doing television work and said he has been contacted by a prominent Indiana alumnus.

"Somebody called me from down there, and I told them that if Rick is interested, to have him call me," said Cooper, who is 67. "At my age, any job I took would have to be a perfect fit. I'd listen, though."

Cutcliffe was fired by Mississippi on Dec. 1 — the same day Greenspan fired Gerry DiNardo. Cutcliffe was 44-29 in six seasons with the Rebels. Solich went 58-19 in six seasons at Nebraska before being fired in November 2003.

Miami coach Terry Hoeppner also has been mentioned in speculation about the Indiana job. Hoeppner attended Franklin College in Indiana and was a head football coach at two Indiana high schools in the 1970s. Hoeppner signed a five-year contract extension with Miami last year after leading the RedHawks to the MAC title.

Indiana has not produced a winning season since 1994.

"I think with the right support, the right people, the right president and the right athletic director, you can win," Cooper said. "I think it takes a commitment, but I don't think you can do it in two or three years."
I'm not sure why Indiana would be interested in Cooper. He's 67 years old and their program is in complete shambles. They need a coach who's going to be there *at least* 5 years who will have the energy and commitment to build a program up from nothing.

Now, if Cooper plans on coaching well into his 'depends' years, then he might get the job.... however Coaches who are able to succeed well into their 70s like Bowden and Paterno (lol, well Paterno 10 years ago) are not common.
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tibor75 said:
Eh, Indiana could do a lot worse than hiring Cooper. It's not like they have a chance to beat scUM anyway...
My thought exactly. I would think IU would be thrilled to go 7-4 or 8-3 every year and lose to Michigan. The problem for Cooper though is how much do the academic problems at OSU under his tenure hurt his chances? Not to mention the crap ESPN is stirring up with the "pay for play" allegations over the last month. I wonder how tarnished Cooper's reputation is amongst ADs, or if he even gets offers?

Personally, I'd love to see him get a job like IU though. With Zook going to Illinois, and imagining Coop at Indiana, all 11 Big-10 schools would have great coaches and recruiters. I think Randy Walker's 'Cats would be the big losers and have to go back to being doormat. No more 6-6 seasons for them!
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Indiana should've hired him the first time around (when they hired Denardo). It may be too late now.

Cooper was terrible against Michigan, and bad in bowls, but can recruit the region pretty well and is a great coach's coach. He had a good eye for hiring coordinators.
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Solich is 60.

Solich profile

Born: Sept. 8, 1944, Johnstown, Pa.

Education: Holy Name High School, Cleveland; bachelor's degree (1966) and master's degree (1972), Nebraska.

Playing career: Lettered at Nebraska as a sophomore, junior and senior from 1963-65.

Coaching experience: Holy Name High School, Omaha, Neb., 1966-68; Southeast High School, Lincoln, Neb., 1968-79; Nebraska freshman coach, 1979-83; Nebraska running backs coach, 1983-90; Nebraska running backs coach/assistant head coach, 1991-97. Head Coach 1999-2003.
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If Indiana was smart they would go young or hire Cutcliffe. Cutcliffe did a solid job at Ole Miss. I still can not believe they got rid of him. I do know that the AD wanted Cutcliffe to get rid of some of his assistants and Cutcliffe told him "Nope", so he got canned. Great Coach and would do well at Indiana!
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im absolutely shocked by this. as much as many of you hate coop, each and every one of you seem completely willing to pass up an opportunity to watch him endure a little sphincter molestation at the hands of our bucks once a year.
i thought this would be one of the most welcome rumors since the possible cloning of "the nuge"...

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I always did and still do love Coop, but the only reason I'd pull for him to get another job in CFB is to get his 200 career wins and solidify a spot in the HoF (though IMO he's already earned it, by winning the Rose Bowl in both the PAC and Big10).

Indiana should be thinking much younger than Cooper and Solich.
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