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

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.