Friday, December 04, 2020

Bret Bielema responds to rumors about college coaching jobs



Dec 2, 10:42 AM


It's been three whole seasons since Bret Bielema last roamed the sidelines as a head coach at the collegiate level. Since his final season with the Arkansas Razorbacks in 2017, Bielema has worked as an assistant coach at the NFL level, first for two seasons with the New England Patriots and now as the outside linebackers coach on the New York Giants.


But with the 2020 season drawing to a close and a new hiring cycle on the horizon, could Bielema's next head coaching opportunity be back at the collegiate level? According to a report by Steven Godfrey of Banner Society, Bielema had been a top candidate for the head coaching vacancy at the Southern Miss Golden Eagles before reports broke that Tulane OC Will Hall is expected to be hired, and he has also interviewed for several other open positions at the college level. 


Speaking to the New York media on Tuesday, Bielema was asked about said reports, and addressed where he and Giants head coach Joe Judge stand when it comes to his ability to pursue potential jobs.


"I’ve had a history in college football, so I think that’s always gonna be out there. I’m sure you can hear a lot of things on the net that are true or untrue, you just kind of do your business," said Bielema. "I keep Joe abreast of anything that kind of comes my way. He’s been great. He knew going into this job, going back to last year, certain things that may come up on my radar. And he’s been awesome. Ownership’s been great."

As he's done in the past, Bielema then cited a favorite piece of advice he received early in his coaching career from Iowa legend Hayden Fry.

"There’s two types of coaches: There’s ones that worry about the job they already have and make people take notice, or there’s people that worry about the job they want to have," said Bielema. "And all I try to do is worry about the job at where I’m at, what I’m doing, hopefully making a great representation of that and see where it goes.”

While Bielema has been able to operate largely away from the spotlight in the NFL, he remains a household name in the college football ranks. Bielema was the head coach of the Wisconsin Badgers from 2006 to 2012, and then coached at Arkansas from 2013 to 2017. Bielema has a 97-58 record in NCAA competition, winning Big Ten Coach of the Year honors in 2006 before winning three-straight conference championships from 2010 to 2012.

On the Giants, Bielema has overseen the improvement of several young late-round draft picks fresh out of the collegiate level. Having lost Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines for the year due to injuries, Bielema has turned rookies Cameron Brown and Carter Coughlin into solid contributors to a better than expected Giants pass rush.


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