Before we even get started, I feel obligated to remind you of something. Many of you are already aware, but for those of you who may be new to these parts we at CCM traditionally do not partake in the rumor mill. We try to avoid it both to provide you with accurate information (even if that means we aren't the first to have it) and of course to maintain our credibility with those who have found us and also those who will in the future.
That said, when you're in a situation such as the one OU Football is currently in it's virtually impossible to follow the above policy. Information can change by the hour, if not sooner, which obviously makes things very difficult to report on, at least accurately.
Currently, there is a ton of speculation being done with respect to not just who Bob Stoops could hire for the two vacant positions on his coaching staff but also as to who he may even be considering. If you know anything about Stoops, you know he wasn't happy about the Bill Bedenbaugh hire leaking out as quickly as it did. So based on the lack of even the tiniest shred of information emanating from the Switzer Center, it would appear things are on complete and utter lockdown.
Be that is it may, a couple new names have potentially (and I cannot possibly stress enough the word, potentially) emerged as possible candidates. Again, just to be clear, at this point everyone who is covering this coaching search is simply trying to do their best to connect the dots on candidates who would make sense. So long as you understand that, we can continue.
Before we get to the new names, a quick update on the previous list of possible candidates we gave you last week.
- Mike Tuiasosopo - Does not appear to be a viable candidate
- Calvin Thibodeaux - While a fan favorite, all reports have indicated there has been no contact between the former Sooner and OU.
- Jim Jeffcoat - Nothing to indicate he has or will be contacted at this point.
- Bryant Young - This one was unlikely to begin with, nothing on OU's part seems to indicate they're interested.
- Joe Salave'a - Of our original list, this one still makes the most sense but as far as anyone knows OU has not contacted him (yet).
Okay, now for the new guys.
Jerry Montgomery (Coaching Bio) - Montgomery is currently a member of Michigan's staff and whose name has really started to pick up some momentum at least from those covering the search. He fits a lot of the criteria that Oklahoma would likely be looking for in a defensive line/tackles coach: he's young (just 31 years old), has a good amount of experience for someone that young, he's African-American (not meant at all to be a race thing, but it's a reality that OU needs more diversity on this staff), and he is regarded as an outstanding recruiter. Michigan just closed with one of the top 2013 classes in the country and if I'm not mistaken, he was the primary recruiter for five star running back Derrick Green.
It's unclear at this point if Stoops has reached out to him and/or how open he'd be to leaving Ann Arbor if Oklahoma were to offer. He was only making a little over $200,000 last year, so you would think Oklahoma could easily beat that assuming they believed he was their guy.
Jamie Christian (Coaching Bio) - A current member of the Houston staff, Christian is another young but highly regarded assistant coach who seems to very much fit the profile of what Oklahoma would be looking for in a candidate. He would fill the Sooners tight end/fullback/special teams vacant position.
Oklahoma fans who have been clamoring for a dedicated special teams coach should love the guy as he's widely regarded as one of the top special teams coaches in the country. By all accounts, he's also considered to be a dynamic recruiter and someone who those around the coaching community rave about.
Much like Montgomery, playing in OU's favor would be the $160,000 Christian made last year though I've seen from Carey Murdock that number could be higher than what is out there officially.
In my opinion, both of these would be absolutely outstanding hires. If I had to guess right now based on what I've heard/read, Montgomery is the more likely of the two. He is someone a number of people who cover the team, with much better sources than any of us hear, believe Oklahoma could be strongly considering. It likely wouldn't be easy to pry him away from Michigan, Oklahoma would definitely have to pony up the cash, but he seems like a candidate that would be well worth it.
On the other hand, Christian is a guy many of us believe OU should be looking at but may not have done so as of yet.
As always, as soon as we know something will bring it to you so keep checking back here in our Coaching Carousel Story Stream for any updates.