On Feb. 8, Mel Tucker withdrew himself from consideration for the Michigan State head-coaching vacancy. Three days later, Mel Tucker accepted Michigan State's offer, forcing Colorado into a mid-February coaching search.
MORE: Tucker is a Hypocrite
Fourteen months after hiring Tucker, who might Colorado hire as Tucker's replacement?
Jim Leavitt, Buffaloes' defensive coordinator under Mike MacIntyre from 2016-18, was in the mix last time; FootballScoop reported Colorado "powerbrokers "powerbrokers believe Leavitt, a known quantity from his time there as defensive coordinator for Mac, is the right answer." Now the defensive coordinator at Florida Atlantic after spending the 2019 season as an analyst at Florida State, Leavitt is 63 years old and hasn't been a head coach in more than a decade.
Vanderbilt head coach Derek Mason and then-Washington defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake were also believed to be a candidate in 2018, though after a rough 2019 season for Vanderbilt and Lake's promotion to head coach, both seem like unlikely options this time. Obviously, the same goes for Ryan Day.
Eric Bieniemy has interviewed for several NFL head-coaching jobs over the last few years but remains with the Kansas City Chiefs. A former All-American and Heisman finalist running back at Colorado, the 50-year-old Bienemy has two stints as a Colorado assistant, most recently as offensive coordinator from 2010-11
Bryan Harsin has shown interest in other jobs during his run at Boise State, most notably Tennessee and Oregon two years. Only 43 years old, he's won 64 games in six seasons and knows the region well, though the timing is tough. Would he bail on his alma mater in February?
Other names to watch: Josh Heupel, Ken Niumatalolo, Seth Littrell, and Blake Anderson.