Sources: Buffalo closing in on hire of new head coach (Updated)

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Buffalo’s fairly brief search to replace Lance Leipold appears to be winding quickly towards the finish line.

Multiple sources tell FootballScoop that Michigan co-defensive coordinator Maurice Linguist is the frontrunner for the spot.

The Buffalo job is the last vacant FBS head coaching opening since Leipold last week accepted a long-term deal to replace Les Miles at Kansas.

Minnesota co-defensive coordinator Joe Harasymiak also is in the mix for the Bulls’ top spot.

In Linguist, Buffalo could find itself with a former Bulls’ assistant coach whose star has continued to ascend since Linguist was a defensive assistant there in the 2012-13 seasons.

A former Baylor player, Linguist has had stints with Iowa State, Texas A&M and the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys in recent years.

After the 2020 NFL season, Linguist was hired away from the Cowboys in late January to become Jim Harbaugh’s co-defensive coordinator as part of Michigan’s almost wholesale staff turnover.

Michigan wrapped up its spring camp in the first half of April.

Harasymiak has deep ties to the Northeast. He’s a New Jersey native who spent eight years at Maine, where he ascended to the head coach position. Three years ago he agreed to become PJ Fleck’s co-defensive coordinator.

While sources maintain Linguist is the front-runner for the Buffalo job, both candidates fit the mold of a young, energetic leader. Linguist is just 37; Harasymiak turns 35 next month.

Sources expect Buffalo to make a decision soon; and the new head coach to be at work at the start of the new week.

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest coaching news.

Update: Buffalo has announced the hire.