With Rutgers facing a bye week, and a big anniversary of the first ever college football game around the corner, a meeting is expected to take place between Schiano and Rutgers decision makers, and momentum is starting to build for his return to Piscataway, according to a report from NJ.com.
The report adds that the hire “could potentially come by Wednesday’s sesquicentennial date” marking the first college football game ever played which featured Rutgers and Princeton.
Back in late September, as news broke that Chris Ash had been fired, we shared that Schiano left his post with Bill Belichick and the Patriots before the start of the season “in order to make himself available to return to Rutgers” as head coach of the Scarlet Knights.
Also noted in the piece is that Alabama offensive analyst and former Tennessee head coach Butch Jones interviewed late last week. We reported the same this earlier this morning.
With Ash out and high level donors reportedly pushing for Schiano, combined with the team’s continued stumbles on the field, events certainly seem to be leaning toward a Schiano return. It would be the ideal, logical landing spot for the man who spent three seasons as the defensive coordinator at Ohio State and saw a social media uprising foil his chances at the head coaching job at Tennessee in one of the most bizarre coaching searches ever.
It’s wild to think about now, but at one point Schiano had led Rutgers (then in the Big East) to win totals of at least 7-wins in 6 of his last 7 seasons before leaving for the Tampa Bay Bucs job in 2012.
Rutgers is sitting at 0-6 in Big Ten play and 2-7 overall following a 38-10 loss to Illinois this past weekend. Interim head coach Nunzio Campanile and the team put together a nice first half against the Illini, but two defensive touchdowns really turned the tide and blew open a 10-10 halftime lead in favor of Lovie Smith’s squad.
Rutgers finishes the season with a tough stretch of games that include Ohio State, Michigan State and Penn State.
Stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.