OT. P.J. Fleck looks like he's staying at least another year

Submitted by jimmyshi03 on December 8th, 2016 at 1:00 PM

Tony Paul from the News is reporting that PJ Fleck is working on a new contract at Western. I'm pretty surprised Fleck didn't get more of a look, especially from Oregon, but it does look like he's taking the Tom Herman wait and see what's available route, rather than jumping at the first job (Herman turned down South Carolina last year). 

Maybe like Herman, his star may somewhat diminish next year, because the Broncos' noncon is much more difficult in 2017. They open at USC and then get the Spartans in EL in week 3. Otherwise, they get FCS Wagner and Idaho, which did go to a bowl this year. 

Now, his recruiting has been such that he's likely to murder the MAC, but it does look like he may be waiting for a gig in the midwest, like maybe one about an hour due south from Kalamazoo in NW Indiana. 



December 8th, 2016 at 1:05 PM ^

Good for Western, good for Kalamazoo, and if he gets the contract that's been rumored, I see almost zero down-side for PJ to come back and ROW THE BOAT for another season awith the Broncos.

matty blue

December 8th, 2016 at 3:00 PM ^

30-21 isn't all that great.  however:

  • jim harbaugh after 4 years at stanford - 29-21
  • nick saban after 4 years at toledo and michigan st - 28-18-1
  • dabo sweeney after 4 years at clemson - 27-19

not saying he's one of these guys.  OBVIOUSLY.  but they've gotten better every year he's been there.  his players love him.  he's ignited a fanbase that's always been pretty meh.  he's earned his shot, probably not oregon-level but certainly purdue-ish.


CRISPed in the DIAG

December 8th, 2016 at 3:07 PM ^

You missed an identical post by a fellow Bronco upthread. And didn't really answer mine.

So let's try something different:

Name a program that has sustained success success in the MAC on a relevant level for more than a year or two............you can't. That's why this was Fleck's best year to go.  But he wasn't quite good enough. Yes *he's recruiting well* - whatever that means in the MAC.

Maybe another good year will do it. 


CRISPed in the DIAG

December 8th, 2016 at 5:46 PM ^

A few seasons with multiple coaches as opposed to one guy who creates a cult of himself like Fleck did this year. That run at N Ill is probably a memory at this stage anyway.

CMU had a bit of consistency with Herb Deromedi in the 70's and 80's and the first few seasons of the 1990's. IIRC, he would get some mention for HC at a place like New Mexico (1990?). Otherwise he was a good MAC lifer - good enough to cycle CMU into contention but not really enough success to get an offer from a major school.

CRISPed in the DIAG

December 8th, 2016 at 8:37 PM ^

Yeah. I don't know if you call an 8-6 record and a 3 way tie for the MAC West the culmination of a dynasty.  Jerry Kill and Dave Doeren are pretty good examples of how to leverage a couple good seasons into higher paying, low-expectation P5 (albeit Minn and NC State) jobs.  

Likewise, poor damn Rod Carey is a good example of needing to jump after consecutive good years.


December 8th, 2016 at 1:10 PM ^

Agree with your comment about a gig in NW Indiana.  If Kelly doesn't turn it around next fall, I would think this could be a distinct possibility.

Bando Calrissian

December 8th, 2016 at 1:10 PM ^

This is a huge risk, but maybe the best choice given the way job searches have shaken out across college football this season. No way he ever has another season like this at WMU, this was the moment to strike when the iron was hot. He comes back next year, loses a few games... Good luck.


December 8th, 2016 at 1:15 PM ^

the Turner Gill scenario, where he doesn't get the big job or has to settle for the much more difficult gig. Or even worse, Tim DeRuyter, who just got fired at Fresno, who essentially sold out to get a job as soon as Derek Carr left but failed to do so, leaving him with nothing the next two yearsand eventually getting let go.  


December 8th, 2016 at 1:16 PM ^

Zero risk: Worst case is that he has a 10 year $30,000,000 contract with a likely huge buyout if he got fired.

He can stay in Kalamazoo and win 10 games a year and be a huge hero. A place like Notre Dame would dump someone who "only" won ten a year.

Best case is that he continues success at WMU, which means winning the MAC but not being expected to beat every Big 10 team they play, and can jump to a bigger place any time.

Seems like a damn smart decision, if that fat rumored contract is true.


December 8th, 2016 at 1:24 PM ^

I think that some people seriously overrate the way the MAC is thought of nationally. Remember when Brady Hoke was the one with the big year? He landed at SDSU. Dave Doeren the last time a MAC school crashed the BCS/NY6? NC State. Last year, the two top MAC coaches left for Iowa State and Syracuse, Kelly and Jones had to use Cincy as a leaping board. I don't think there's much risk of Fleck losing his chance at those type of jobs by going 9-3 next year... Boston College, say, would still hire him. He was never going to get the big time P5 job that some seemed to think might be coming. 

Worst case scenario for him is getting paid to coach at WMU forever. 


December 8th, 2016 at 1:55 PM ^

I don't think it was overrating MAC coaches. Recently the ones to make the leap to the B1G went to Purdue and Illinois, not Michigan or Ohio State. Even Urban Meyer went to Utah prior to landing at Florida and Saban did time in East Lansing before moving up to LSU.

Fleck was probably not seriously considered for Oregon, LSU, or Texas. He was probably a candidate for Houston, Temple, USF, and Nevada.


December 8th, 2016 at 7:39 PM ^

"Worst case scenario for him is getting paid to coach at WMU forever. "

Remember when all the pundits were carefully explaining to us naive Michigan dunderheads that the NFL obviously trumped any possible college gig? After all, it's indisputably the highest level of football on the planet.

I'm not saying Fleck is happy to stay at WMU until he dies, but the idea that the worst thing that could possibly happen is that he enjoys success, is beloved by his community/players, and gets paid millions of dollars to do it seems a bit blinkered.


December 8th, 2016 at 1:11 PM ^

I wouldn't be surprised if he signs an extension, and then still leaves.

If an up and coming coach has a good relationship with the athletic departtment, it's not uncommon for them to sign a new contract with a bigger buyout. So when Fleck inevitably gets poached, at least Western will get a big payout.

Then again, Fleck seems to be cut from a different mold so we'll see.

Perkis-Size Me

December 8th, 2016 at 1:49 PM ^

But with a $30 million contract over 10 years, that might be a pretty big buy-out. There's only a handful of schools that might consider paying that, depending on what the remaining buy-out is. 

Fleck might be SOL over the next few years if there's open jobs that he wants. A lot of schools won't want to risk paying that much just for a buy-out, and then on top of whatever salary Fleck wants to command. 


December 8th, 2016 at 1:15 PM ^

From Kzoo, was fun to see everyone from home pumped for the Broncos.  Used to drive by the stadium all the time and you almost didn't know it was there.  Just cool overall...