Brian Kelly endured a 4-8 season at Notre Dame in 2016. Could the Fighting Irish head coach be looking for a fresh start outside of South Bend?
Is the coaching carousel about to spin out of control?
According to Pat Forde of Yahoo Sports, Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly has reached out through representatives to explore his coaching options outside of South Bend.
The report comes after the Fighting Irish finished off a disappointing 4-8 season with a 45-27 loss to USC at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Saturday, Kelly’s seventh year at the school. It was ND’s second-worst record in the last 52 years.
The setback to the Trojans finished off a week that also featured the NCAA announcing that it plans to vacate 21 Notre Dame victories in the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons for academic misconduct involving eight players.
While the frustration level for fans has been high all season, Irish athletic director Jack Swarbrick has consistently maintained that Kelly’s job is safe. After arriving from Cincinnati, Kelly has gone 59-31 in South Bend, including a 12-1 mark and national runner-up finish in 2012. He also had a 10-win season in 2015.
We have already seen Texas hire Tom Herman and LSU retain interim head coach Ed Orgeron, while Baylor, Purdue and Houston remain open. But unless a job such as Oregon, Texas A&M or UCLA open, Kelly’s college choices seem limited. However, moving onto the NFL could be another avenue that Kelly opts to pursue if he does indeed choose to leave the Irish.
In addition to the BCS title game appearance, Kelly enjoyed a New Year’s Six Bowl berth last year as well. But he is just 15-15 in his last 30 games with the Irish.