Eastern Washington football coach Beau Baldwin is one of three finalists for the vacancy at Nevada and has interviewed for the position, The Spokesman-Review has learned from multiple sources.
Baldwin is one of three finalists for the position, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal. The others are Vanderbilt offensive coordinator Andy Ludwig and a mystery candidate who also will be interviewed this week.
Baldwin and Ludwig have been leading candidates from the start.
Nevada athletic director Doug Knuth said last week that the Wolf Pack plans to name a new coach by Friday to replace Brian Polian, who was fired Nov. 27. That’s partly because Knuth wants the new coach to move quickly into recruiting.
Coincidentally or not, Cherokee Valeria, Eastern’s cornerbacks coach and recruiting coordinator, has recently begun following Nevada football commits on Twitter.
Baldwin did not return calls to his cell phone Monday afternoon.
Nevada’s search has focused on offensive-oriented coaches.
Baldwin, 44, was a quarterback at Central Washington and has spent the last 22 seasons as a coach at either CWU or Eastern. Since taking over for Paul Wulff, Baldwin has guided the Eagles to an 84-31 overall record and 58-14 in the Big Sky.
This year’s team is 11-1 and will host Richmond in an FCS quarterfinal game on Saturday, but that won’t be a distraction if Baldwin gets the Nevada job. Three years ago, former North Dakota State coach Craig Bohl was midway through the postseason when he accepted the job at Wyoming.
Bohl finished out his time at NDSU with a third straight national title.
The Nevada job could hold some attraction for the 44-year-old Baldwin. Reno is located near the strong recruiting grounds in California, the program has a newly renovated 25,000-seat stadium and has a tradition of success.
Baldwin also could expect to more than double his salary, which currently is about $220,000 annually. Polian’s base was $585,000 with almost $100,000 in incentives.
This isn’t the first time on the coaching carrousel for Baldwin, who drew interest from Oregon State in 2014.
The 52-year-old Ludwig has never been a head coach, but has been an offensive coordinator at various programs since 1997.
Ludwig has worked at Cal Poly, Fresno State, Oregon, Utah, Kansas State, Cal, San Diego State, Wisconsin and Vanderbilt. He was a receiver at Portland State from 1985-86.
Several other names have dropped off Knuth’s list. UCLA quarterbacks coach Marques Tuiasosopo and Oklahoma State running backs coach Marcus Arroyo are no longer in the mix, according to the Gazette-Journal.
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