BYU Reportedly To Hire Kalani Sitake As New Head Coach

    BYU might have found its new head coach in Oregon State defensive coordinator Kalani Sitake.

    December 19, 2015

    BYU might have found its new head coach in Oregon State defensive coordinator Kalani Sitake.

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    BYU fans were just getting used to the idea of trying to figure out how to spell and say Ken Niumatalolo – I’m still not always 100% sure I get the extra A in the right place – and now it’s looking like Kalani Sitake is going to be the next head coach to take over a bigger-time head coaching job than it’s probably being given credit for.

    As a former LaVell Edwards player, and rooted in the BYU world and knows what it’s like to coach in Utah, Sitake checks all the boxes for the fan base.

    As long as he wins, wins a lot, and makes BYU a national player.

    While Niumatalolo would’ve been a bit of a hard sell considering the option offense system he runs – with BYU being legendary for its high-powered passing games, and all – Sitake could be the better overall fit, even if he doesn’t have the resume or the legacy of success the current Navy head man would’ve brought in.

    Sitake is more of a defensive-minded coach working with Utah and then Oregon State, learning his trade from Gary Andersen, who turned Utah State into a defensive powerhouse and did a fantastic job with the Wisconsin D during his stint in Madison.

    Young, just 40 when the 2016 college football season starts, Sitake is the type of head coach who can grow in the system and the job, but first he’ll need a little bit of time to get through the new head man mistakes. He’s a rising star, though, and BYU might have found the type of keeper head coach who can hang around for a decade or more. For the right guy this is a true destination gig, and Sitake will get his shot to make this a true home.

    BYU is in a strange place – no, not Provo. As an independent, it gets all the positives of getting to do whatever it wants, it gets to keep all the money it makes, and it has a worldwide fan base as much if not more so than Notre Dame because of the religious aspect to the program. As much as it’s hamstrung at times by the Honor Code and LDS side, it’s also a built-in advantage to have a leg up on some of the better prospects who fit the school’s profile. Sitake can tap into all of that without any problem.

    BYU has some rebuilding to do next year at receiver, but Tanner Mangum is back along with the entire offensive backfield, Taysom Hill is still a possibility, and as many as seven starters could be back on defense. Starting out the year against Arizona, at Utah, UCLA, and West Virginia, though, will put the pressure on right away.

    The key will be Sitake’s offensive coordinator, since the former fullback is more rooted in a defensive mindset and a spread option attack that Andersen made work so well. BYU was solid defensively this year under Bronco Mendenhall, but the running game wasn’t so great.

    If Sitake really does go with the zone-read type of spread, it might be a best of all worlds considering it’s not what Niumatalolo would’ve brought in, and it should appease those looking to get back to the fun ‘n’ gun days – just win at BYU, and everything is okay.


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