Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy might not be out of the running for the Colorado Buffaloes coaching job just yet. While reports circulated yesterday that Bieniemy had decided once and for all to stay in the NFL, rumors to the contrary were making the rounds on Thursday afternoon. Mike Klis of 9News reported the OC is still having doubts about his final decision.
Part of the reason Bieniemy is rumored to be hemming and hawing about whether or not he’s going to stay in Kansas City or depart for his alma mater is that, according to Klis and others, he’s a strong candidate for the job. It’s also possible the Buffaloes are upping their offer after one of their other candidates reportedly took himself out of the running; just a day after Steve Sarkisian was considered a possible candidate, the Alabama offensive coordinator is said to have decided he’s staying with the Crimson Tide, according to SaturdayDownSouth.
It appears Nick Saban was willing to pay Sarkisian even more money in order to get him to stick around. The site reports he is slated to be “one of college football’s highest-paid assistants,” as a reward for turning down Colorado. He was already scheduled to make $1.6 million this year.
While there is some disagreement on just how high the chances are that Colorado will offer the head coaching job to Bieniemy, the disagreements appear to be based on the likelihood he would take the job. 247Sports reported the Chiefs’ offensive coordinator is currently listed as the fifth-most-likely option for the Buffaloes in Vegas, but other analysts around the college football world, as well as the NFL, believe he’s much higher on the list than that.
As has been the case since Bieniemy’s name first started circulating, many believe he would be foolish to take the head coaching job for CU. After the Chiefs’ runs to the AFC Championship and Super Bowl victory the last two years, the former Buffaloes running back is considered the hottest name in coaching. He interviewed for several openings this past offseason but was eventually passed over for all of them.
While reports also circulated Colorado could be zeroing in on its choice as soon as the end of the week, the school’s athletic director said they aren’t close to announcing a hire. For now, Kansas City Chiefs fans are among those who are on the hook, waiting to see whether Bieniemy will be in the college game or the NFL in 2020.