September 22, 2019 | 85° F

Barchi refutes reports, rumors of next head football coach

Photo by Edwin Gano |

File Photo | President Robert. L Barchi said in an on-the-record interview with The Daily Targum on Tuesday that making decisions as a college president has become more difficult in the months leading up to and after the presidential election. 

With the search for the new Rutgers head football coach underway, University President Robert L. Barchi refuted any reports that he has already offered any of the candidates for the job.

In an exclusive interview with The Daily Targum's editorial board on Monday afternoon, Barchi fielded both on-the-record and off-the-record questions relating to the Scarlet Knights' vacant head coaching position, giving insight to where the administration looks to go in the hiring process.

"Things in college sports, especially with the big coaches in football and basketball, tend to happen pretty quickly and they happen very privately," Barchi told the Targum. "There are no big search committees, no big public discussions — and I wouldn't be surprised if we were able to conclude a search for the next football coach within the next two weeks. It could happen faster than that, it could happen slower than that. But it probably won't be much longer than that."

Barchi fired Julie Hermann and Kyle Flood from their respective posts as athletic director and head football coach Sunday afternoon, as NJ Advance Media first reported. He then hired Dean Emeritus of Seton Hall University School of Law Patrick Hobbs as Hermann's permanent replacement later that day.

Given the speed at how quickly Rutgers made its moves between the firing and hiring of both high-ranking positions in the athletic department, all eyes are on who Barchi will tap to replace Flood as the third head football coach since 2001. 

While it remains to be seen when the move will be made, Barchi did not reveal how soon or how late that may be.

"It's impossible to give you an expected date that's any finer tune than two weeks," he said. "That doesn't give me a lot of leeway."

Reports surfaced Sunday, the same day Barchi let go of Hermann and Flood, that Rutgers had already contacted the likes of Greg Schiano and Mario Cristobal for the position.

But as he told reporters on a conference call Sunday afternoon with Hobbs, Barchi reiterated Monday that no offers have been made.

With 14 head coaching vacancies in the Football Bowl Subdivision, moves are already being made. 

Barchi said he is aware that Rutgers needs to act fast, but will not jump the gun before it gets the proper candidate it needs to guide the football program with consistent progression as the Knights continue on in the Big Ten.

"I can't start a search for a football coach until I have fired the old head football coach, made a transition in ADs, have an athletic director in place that can do the search for me," he said. "We just did that (Sunday), so we just officially started the search (Sunday)."

For updates on the Rutgers football team, follow @GarrettStepien and @TargumSports on Twitter.

Garrett Stepien

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