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Tennessee Titans Coaching Candidate Profile: Brian Kelly

Tossing a new name into the mix.

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Current job: Notre Dame Head Coach

Age: 54

Head coaching record: 226-79-2


Brian Kelly appeared to be a lifer at Grand Valley State.  He was with that program from 1987 to 2003, ascending through the ranks after starting as a graduate assistant.  Kelly got the head gig in 1991, building the program into a powerhouse by the 2000s.  Finally, Kelly got his shot to make the jump to the FBS, taking over for Mike DeBord at Central Michigan.

Kelly made steady gains at Central Michigan, winning four, six, then nine games.  He then bolted for Cincinnati, following Mark Dantonio.  Kelly nearly guided the Bearcats to a BCS National Championship birth in 2009, but fell just short after landing at number three in the final rankings. Kelly then got the call from Notre Dame.

Kelly's work at Notre Dame has been outstanding.  He's returned the Irish to national prominence, making an appearance in a the national championship game just three years in.  Kelly has turned Notre Dame into an NFL pipeline once again and is set to send multiple first round prospects to the NFL this season.

Why Kelly?

The short answer is that he's won at every stop that he has made.  I realize that the NFL and college scenes are totally different, but Kelly has had each program that he's touched on an upward trend in three years or less. Kelly has sustained success at Notre Dame, turning that program back into a traditional power.

His offensive schemes have adapted to the personnel that he has inherited. We've seen him run everything from a power spread option attack to a pro-style under center approach.  Kelly has been able to develop talent everywhere -- something that hasn't been the case for the Titans.

Would Kelly leave Notre Dame?

I think he would.  If you think back to when the Eagles were after Chip Kelly, Brian Kelly's name kept coming up in that search.  Chip ended up getting the job, but it was clear that the Eagles were interested.  It was also clear that Brian was interested in the Eagles.  He was reported to have interviewed for the head coaching job in January of 2013.

So clearly Kelly has some interest in the NFL.  Would he leave Notre Dame and come to Nashville? I'm not sure, but the job keeps looking better and better with each touchdown pass that Marcus Mariota tosses.