Lincoln Riley isn’t the only talented offensive mind in his family.
Riley’s brother Garrett has been promoted to Appalachian State’s offensive coordinator position and will call plays for them, according to Yahoo’s Pete Thamel.
Riley coached at East Carolina with his brother from 2014-2015 and spent 2016-2018 with Kansas in various coaching roles. He was a running backs coach for App State this season and has now been made offensive coordinator.
Garrett was a quarterback on Texas Tech’s roster from 2008-2009.
Appalachian State has been a powerhouse since joining the Sun Belt. They’ve had four double-digit win seasons in six years and won five straight bowl games. They just lost head coach Eli Drinkwitz to Missouri.
Two of the hottest names that have been mentioned as potential head coaching candidates for the Dallas Cowboys have no experience at the NFL level, and most have assumed that would not deter Jerry Jones from hiring them given his history. However, Jones may have hinted on Friday that experience will be a factor in the decision making process if the Cowboys move on from Jason Garrett.
During an appearance on 105.3 The Fan, Jones praised Lincoln Riley for the job he has done at Oklahoma and Matt Rhule for how quickly he has turned things around at Baylor. The Cowboys owner then made some interesting remarks about how difficult it is for college coaches to transition to the NFL.
For what it’s worth, Jones reminded listeners that Jimmy Johnson went 1-15 in his first season as the head coach in Dallas. Johnson only had collegiate coaching experience prior to that, and he went on to win two Super Bowls with the Cowboys. He was replaced by Barry Switzer, who also had zero NFL coaching experience but went 12-4 in his first season with a talented roster in Dallas and led the team to another Super Bowl championship in his second year on the job.
What does all that mean? Coaches that joined the Cowboys with no prior NFL coaching experience have combined to win three Lombardi trophies for Jones. If Riley wants the Dallas job, he could easily use that to pitch Jones, and there’s reason to believe it might work. The same can be said for Urban Meyer, who may actually have a better chance at landing the job than Riley.
It sounds like Jones’ first choice to replace Garrett is currently under contract with another NFL team, so he may decide to poke around the college ranks.
Barring a Super Bowl run, Jason Garrett’s time as Dallas Cowboys head coach seems like it will end after this season. Once he’s gone, the big question will become: who will replace him? The Cowboys apparently have a few names in mind.
NFL Media’s Jane Slater reported on Thursday night that the Cowboys have “very real interest” in Urban Meyer. She says Stephen Jones even spoke with Meyer recently. Slater says Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley remains a strong candidate, and that Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott is also a possibility.
Between those three names, it’s hard to imagine the Cowboys not making Meyer their top priority. He is one of the greatest coaches in college football history and has had success at every single stop, from Bowling Green and Utah to Florida and Ohio State.
The big issue with Meyer is his health. Not having to recruit year-round might be better on his health and allow him to focus more on coaching, which could make the NFL ideal for him. And keep this in mind: Meyer has already said he would “absolutely” take the job.
The likelihood of Jason Garrett losing his job is increasing by the week, and the belief is that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is planning to make a big splash to replace him. If the two sides do end up parting ways, it has become clear that Lincoln Riley will be a name to watch.
Riley is considered one of the top candidates to become the next head coach of the Cowboys. As Ian Rapoport of NFL Network noted on Sunday, the Jones family has a close relationship with Riley from when Riley recruited Jones’ grandson, former top high school QB prospect John Stephen Jones.
“Lincoln Riley did an in-home visit with the Joneses, and it was at that point that they realized how brilliant he was,” Rapoport said. “They watched film together and it went extremely well.”
John Stephen Jones eventually ended up at Arkansas after Riley tried to get him to walk on at Oklahoma, but there is a mutual level of respect between Riley and the Jones family.
Riley has repeatedly said that he loves it at Oklahoma and has no plans to leave, but the Cowboys’ head coaching job is one of the most prestigious in all of sports. Dallas is certainly not the only NFL team that would try to hire Riley away from the Sooners, but the job is likely one of the few — if not the only — that the 36-year-old would strongly consider.
Young, offensive-minded NFL head coaches like Sean McVay and Matt LaFleur have made Riley an even hotter commodity with the early success they enjoyed with their teams. The Cowboys are still very much in the playoff hunt at 6-6 and are in first in the NFC East, but the latest report we heard about Garrett’s job security does not sound promising for him. Riley would bring the type of excitement and positive reaction to Dallas that Jones is always seeking.
Jerry Jones gave his latest public endorsement of Jason Garrett earlier this week when he said it would be a losing proposition to bet on the head coach being fired, but a lot can change over the course of a few months. If the Dallas Cowboys do decide to move on from Garrett following the season, they may already have their top replacement in mind.
It is no secret that NFL teams would have interest Lincoln Riley if the Oklahoma head coach decided he wanted to coach at the pro level, and Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that Jones is “very intrigued” by the idea of hiring Riley if the Cowboys do not extend Garrett’s contract. There is a belief that Riley would be open to considering the right NFL opportunity next season, and it doesn’t get much better than the Dallas job between the high-profile nature of it and core players they already have in place.
Jones is unlikely to make a coaching change in the middle of the season, but there’s a reason the Cowboys chose to let Garrett enter a lame duck year rather than giving him a contract extension. The expectations in Dallas are as high as they have been in years, and Troy Aikman said recently that there’s a feeling the Cowboys need to at least reach the NFC Championship Game in order for Garrett to keep his job.
As for Riley, there may come a time when the interest from NFL teams is simply too strong to ignore. His Sooners are 6-0 following Saturday’s big win over Texas, and Jalen Hurts is in contention to be the school’s third consecutive Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback. A recent report shed some light on just how much of a hot commodity Riley has become in the NFL, so Jones may get the urge to be at the forefront of that movement.
The rumors linking Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley to an NFL move are once again popping up.
Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller said Saturday that he’d heard from one NFL front office source that there would be a “race” to fire head coaches this season, because many teams want a shot at trying to lure Riley to the NFL.
This is far from the first time we’ve heard speculation linking Riley to an NFL job. His departure was quite unlikely toward the end of last year, and the Oklahoma coach ultimately signed a contract extension. Things can certainly change, but it’s hard to imagine that Riley would be eager to leave during the regular season.
To be clear, it’s easy to see why NFL teams would have interest in Riley. He’s 27-4 as the Sooners’ head coach, has shown the ability to work with multiple future NFL quarterbacks, and promotes an offensive style that is quickly becoming all the rage.
If this report is true, there’s one team that might really be able to get a leg up in the Riley sweepstakes — if they exist, that is.
An old Lincoln Riley quote that surfaced Monday isn’t going to do much to quiet the rumors linking Houston’s D’Eriq King to Oklahoma.
King announced Monday that he was taking advantage of the redshirt rule to sit out the rest of the season and transfer away from the Cougars. It immediately launched an avalanche of speculation regarding where King would land, with the Sooners and their successful history of transfer quarterbacks being frequently mentioned.
In light of that, ESPN’s Marty Smith tweeted a quote that may prove significant, as stated by Riley after Oklahoma’s season-opening win over Houston.
To be clear, any chatter linking King to Oklahoma right now is speculation. But it is informed speculation, as the Sooners will need a quarterback and they’ve thrived on nabbing transfers in recent years. There are certainly other potential destinations that would make sense, but it certainly seems like Riley would happily take King on board if it becomes a plausible scenario.
When Jalen Hurts chose Oklahoma as his transfer destination following his graduation from Alabama, many assumed his choice came with the promise that he would be the program’s starting quarterback. Lincoln Riley has insisted that is not the case.
During Oklahoma’s season-opening game on Sunday against Houston, ESPN’s announcers talked about Hurts winning the starting job. They said they were told by Riley there was a fair competition where all the quarterbacks received equal snaps and chances to win the job.
That means Tanner Mordecai, who redshirted last year, and Spencer Rattler, a five-star recruit, both got the same opportunities as Hurts. Part of Riley’s proof that there was an equal competition is that he says if there were a time to give one quarterback more snaps than the others, it would have been this year with Hurts, who was new to the system after spending the first part of his career at Alabama, but that didn’t happen. Riley made the same statement in April when talking about the competition.
Hurts was named the starting quarterback on Aug. 19, 13 days before the team’s first game of the season. The next day Mordecai was named the backup and Rattler third string. Oklahoma would love to have Rattler redshirt this season and save his eligibility for after Hurts is gone.
There are few coaches in college football who have more to sell recruits on than Lincoln Riley, but you might be surprised to learn what impresses some young players the most when they visit the Oklahoma campus.
No, it’s not the fact that Riley has helped produce two different Heisman Trophy winners in his two seasons with the Sooners — it’s his massive collection of Jordan Brand shoes.
Who cares if Riley helped Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray become the first two players who played the same position at the same school get drafted No. 1 overall in back-to-back years? With a collection of kicks like that, you hardly need anything else.
All joking aside, Riley’s recruiting prowess obviously stretches well beyond his Jordan collection. The confidence he has expressed in Oklahoma’s offense this year probably helps, too. If the Sooners win 12 or more games again this season even after losing a second consecutive Heisman Trophy winner, Riley’s recruiting job will become even easier.
Oklahoma Sooners coach Lincoln Riley has a quarterback decision to make, and while he’d like to do it during fall camp, he won’t promise it.
Riley said Friday that it would be his preference to name the new starter during camp, but he’s going to leave his options open and make the decision when he feels ready to.
“You get a lot more accurate snapshot of where these guys are really at, as camp unfolds,” Riley said, via Edward Aschoff of ESPN. “I would prefer to [name a starter during camp] because then you’re able to get it out of the way, you’re able to start to focus your reps in on the starter and the team knows — everybody knows — and you can move on.”
Riley has gone to great lengths to emphasize that it’s an open competition at Oklahoma, even though transfer Jalen Hurts is widely considered the heavy favorite. Redshirt freshman Tanner Mordecai is considered his primary competition, though Riley has also left the door open for highly-touted true freshman Spencer Rattler to earn some reps as well.