This is a classy gesture from Miles, who is now the head coach at Kansas. That’s especially true when you remember that when Miles was fired, it was Ed Orgeron who took over, initially on an interim basis.
Miles went 114-34 in just over 11 seasons at the helm at LSU. It would be easy for him to be a little bit bitter about how things have gone in the three-plus years since his departure, but Orgeron would probably be quick to pay tribute to Miles and the foundation that was built in Baton Rouge.
Les Miles was introduced as the new head football coach of the Kansas Jayhawks on Sunday, and his press conference included an odd moment.
He was talking about what kind of involvement the team would have in the community and appeared to have a brainfreeze. He went nearly 20 seconds in between finishing his thought as his mind went blank.
The Kansas Jayhawks officially announced Les Miles as their new football coach Sunday, a big-name hire for a school that desperately needed it. It turns out he’ll be making a decent amount of money, too.
According to the official news release, Miles signed a five-year contract with the Jayhawks. That deal will pay him $2,775,000 annually, meaning he’ll make just shy of $14 million total, not counting a pair of retention bonuses.
Miles was making upwards of $4 million a year when he was fired by the LSU Tigers in 2016, so he’s taking a slight pay cut here, though that was to be expected.
Miles was always the frontrunner for this job, and it seems safe to say he’s a big believer in the project. The Jayhawks look to have landed him at a fairly reasonable cost, too.
There may be something to the Les Miles to Kansas rumors.
The Kansas Jayhawks fired David Beaty after the team lost on Saturday to fall to 3-6 on the season. They are looking for their fourth head coach since firing Mark Mangino after the 2009 season and would like to hire someone who can get them more than three wins in a year, which they haven’t done this decade.
The Kansas City Star’s Jesse Newell tracked the private plane of Kansas AD Jeff Long, which made stops in Phoenix and Dallas. He wondered whether the stop in Phoenix was to talk with former Arizona State head coach Todd Graham and whether the Dallas stop was for North Texas coach Seth Littrell.
Long is said to be seeking a veteran coach with experience. Miles, who turns 65 soon, has plenty of experience from his time at Oklahoma State and LSU.
The long-dormant Kansas football program could look to make an impact hire this offseason, and one big-name coach could be willing to take the job.
According to Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports, former LSU coach Les Miles would have interest in the Kansas position, though he has yet to be approached by Jayhawks athletic director Jeff Long.
There is some reason to believe this is a plausible match. Long was an associate athletic director at Michigan in the early 1990s when Miles was an assistant coach there. The former LSU coach also has experience recruiting in the region thanks to his time as Oklahoma State’s coach from 2001-2004.
Miles would have to give up that acting career of his, but he’s made no secret of his intention to coach again. He’d instantly give Kansas credibility it hasn’t had in recent years, though the two sides haven’t even talked and it’s unclear if they will.
The article describes the 64-year-old coach as having a dream of acting in movies like so many others. But apparently he’s really serious and has been bitten by the acting bug.
Miles has three credits on his IMDB page, including one where he played a scout in the football movie, “When the Game Stands Tall.” He has a much larger role in a movie due out this year called “Angry Men.” And if Miles has his way, he’ll have many more to add to his page over the next few years.
Miles has not coached since being fired by LSU during the 2016 season. He amassed a 114-34 career record with the Tigers, including winning a national championship. This new focus of his makes you wonder how seriously he wants to get back into coaching, especially when you combine it with comments he made in November.
Miles was fired by LSU mid-season last year and has been out of coaching since. He interviewed for some different vacancies, but the 63-year-old acknowledged recently that he could have done better in his interviews. Perhaps a job at a prestigious football school like Tennessee will get him charged up so he’s at his best.
Tennessee has been in the market for a new coach since firing Butch Jones last month. They were set to hire Greg Schiano last weekend, but fans protested so furiously that the deal was cancelled. Then after many other pursuits failed, the school fired AD John Currie and installed Phillip Fulmer as the new AD. It seemed as if Mike Leach was going to be the next hire by Currie, but now that Fulmer is in charge, he appears to be going in a different direction.
It’s unclear who else Fulmer has contacted about the vacancy. Miles may be older than many other candidates, and fans complained about his teams’ offensive struggles, but the man was a proven winner in the difficult SEC West and routinely won double-digit games.
Les Miles is still hunting for a route back into coaching, and he has his eyes on a potential job opportunity.
According to Bob Lundeberg of the Corvallis Gazette-Times, Miles is interested in the vacant Oregon State job, which recently began formally accepting applications. The former LSU coach, currently working as a Fox Sports analyst, is apparently a believer that he can turn the program around.
The Beavers are 1-8 in 2017, though the program has had some recent success under former coach Mike Riley. The team’s previous coach, Gary Andersen, left as coach in early October midway through his third season in charge.
Miles has said in the past that he wants to build a championship program at a new school. Oregon State is in a bad place right now, but he’s clearly a firm believer in his ability to make it happen.
Les Miles remains out of coaching over a year after being fired by LSU. He interviewed for many positions in the months that followed his firing but did not land any jobs.
In a recent interview with Yahoo’s Pete Thamel, Miles admitted that he could have done better in some of those interviews. Thamel wrote the following about Miles: “He interviewed for a handful of jobs last year, and admits he could have done better in the interviews.”
And though Thamel does not include an exact quote from Miles, he says Miles acknowledged he could have been more enthusiastic in his interviews.
“Miles spoke to a handful of schools last year and admits, in retrospect, he could have interviewed with more enthusiasm,” Thamel wrote.
Maybe the programs with whom he interviewed didn’t excite Miles enough, and he couldn’t hide that. Baylor, Western Michigan, and Minnesota were among the positions to whom he was linked. All of those programs have their questions.
This could help explain why a coach who has been so successful during his career has gone a year without finding a new job. Miles, after all, won a national championship and two SEC titles at LSU, not to mention his prior success at Oklahoma State before going to Baton Rouge.
Turning 64 next week, Miles needs to find a school that will be open to hiring an older coach.