Penn State defensive coordinator Bob Shoop, a candidate for LSU’s defensive coordinator job, is expected to receive a new contract with a salary of near $1 million , according to a report from Fox Sports, and Shoop suggested on Thursday that LSU’s timeline to hire a coach wouldn’t allow him to stay in the race.
Shoop interviewed with LSU coach Les Miles for the open coordinator gig Wednesday and then tweeted this Wednesday night, a clear sign he was staying with the Nittany Lions:
Shoop was not offered the job during the meeting with Miles on Wednesday, but he was not ruled out, two sources closes to the coach told The Advocate. Shoop was pressured by Penn State coach James Franklin during this week-long dance with the Tigers, multiple sources say.
On local radio in Pennsylvania on Thursday morning, Shoop suggested LSU’s time frame for a hire was involved in his decision to pull out of the search.
“Ultimately when it came to their decision making time, Penn State was the best opportunity for me and my family,” he said.
Fox Sports reported on Thursday morning that Shoop was set to get a three-year contract with a salary “close to $1 million per year.”
Shoop was highly interested in the job to replace John Chavis, according to a source close to the coach, and the two sides had flirted since Chavis bolted for Texas A&M last week.
“I was flattered someone had reached out to me,” Shoop said during the radio interview. “I’m very loyal to Coach Franklin. Being from Pennsylvania, I have a dream job that 99.99 percent of people in my profession would trade places with me in a heart beat. It really wasn’t much of a decision when it came down to it.”
Shoop, 48, was one of very few coaches who interviewed with Miles for a job that’s getting a host of interest from around the nation. A salary for the new coordinator is expected to be similar to that of Chavis, who made $1.3 million a year, the third-highest of any assistant in the nation.
So where does LSU turn now? The Advocate reported Sunday night that defensive line coach Brick Haley has “not been ruled out” as a replacement for Chavis, who also coached linebackers.
Haley, 48, has been on LSU’s staff since 2009, the year Chavis started with the program as well. He’s been a defensive coordinator once – for three years at Baylor in 1999-2001. He coached linebackers for the Bears and has been a linebackers coach at three other stops during his coaching career.
Haley’s promotion could make room for a popular name: Ed Orgeron. The former Ole Miss coach and longtime Southern California defensive line coach is out of a job and lives in Mandeville.
There are other names, too.
Alabama linebackers coach Kevin Steele continues to be a candidate, and Miles met with Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops – and possibly others – in Dallas over the weekend.
Shoop wasn’t a flashy name, but he had captained some of the nation’s best defenses.
Shoop just completed his first season as coordinator with the Nittany Lions. Penn State was second nationally in total defense in 2014. He followed Franklin from Vanderbilt. Shoop served as defensive coordinator for three seasons at Vandy, helping Franklin and the Commodores win 24 games in 2011-13. Vandy was never outside of the top-25 in total defense those three years.
Shoop, a Pennsylvania native who played receiver at Yale, has stints as defensive coordinator at Yale (1994-96), Villanova (97), UMass (06) and William and Mary (07-10).
Miles, an offensive-minded coach who rarely dabbles in the defense, is “taking time” with the search and knows “the importance” of the hire, sources said. Still, a hire is expected by the weekend, but Shoop’s exit from the process could extend the search.
The recruiting dead period ends Jan. 15.