Lots and lots of names are being floated. ESPN mentioned half a dozen NFL names this morning. There are still plenty of college names getting kicked around. This is what I know:
-- Formal interviews started Friday. Bates hinted as much on Twitter. As I posted yesterday Dave Doeren was never even called. I have no other confirmation on who was or wasn't called. I do know that earlier in the week BC did reach out to the "A" list of O'Brien, Golden and Mullen. O'Brien is not leaving Penn State. Mullen and Golden are still in the mix for multiple jobs.
-- BC told one coach's agent that they have their three finalists. This was an agent trying to get a client in the mix and was rebuffed. I don't know who the three are.
-- Bates isn't on a hard timeline but wants a coach in place and on campus for a press conference and team meeting before exams. Exams start December 13.
This is what I expect:
-- Finalists will get a meeting with Leahy this week. A deal will be done later in the week.
I am encouraged that current BC assistants are still working on the recruiting class. Through their work, BC picked up a commitment from Massachusetts defensive tackle Tevin Montgomery. Coach Aaron Smith is visiting committed players to keep them locked into the class. None of these guys should be forced on the new coach, but I hope Bates does his best to help them find new jobs in football.
I have no idea who the new guy will be
It was much easier to handicap the field when Gene was around. He was predictable and there were plenty of people around BC who liked to talk. Bates changes all of that for most observers and reporters. But I am impressed with his thoroughness, commitment to a process and not getting distracted by what others are doing.
Process is good, but it doesn't help those who want answers. I am more confident in which guys it won't be. But as of right now (just after midnight) I would guess it is either Lembo, Sullivan or Diaco. But who knows? As always I will share what I know when I know it. Stay tuned.