GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Let the rumors begin.
It’s that time of year when college football coaches are hired, fired and rumored to be heading somewhere else. Just this past weekend, we had the following news break:
- Florida hires Louisiana-Lafayette coach Billy Napier
- Southern Cal lures away Oklahoma head coach and former East Carolina assistant Lincoln Riley
- Penn State locks up James Franklin to a new 10-year contract
- Michigan State extends the contract of Mel Tucker for 10 years
Now, the buzz involves East Carolina head football coach Mike Houston. While there has been no active buzz regarding Houston, who signed a five-year, $7.38 million contract when he was hired in 2018, his name is already popping up on some wish lists.
The Athletic has Houston listed among other names for the Virginia Tech job. Athlon Sports also has Houston among a list of 11 current college football coaches who could be a good fit at Duke.
Monday evening, Stephen Igoe reported on Hoist The Colours that ECU is working to finalize an extension and raise for Houston and his entire staff. Igoe also reported ECU had the lowest-paid staff entering this past season.
ECU finished up its regular season last Friday, going 7-5 after 35-13 a loss to No. 4 Cincinnati. Saturday morning, ECU accepted a bid to play in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27 in Annapolis, Md. It marked Houston’s best season since he came to ECU, following a 4-8 debut in 2019. He is currently 14-19 overall.
Houston has had incredible coaching success, sporting an 87-39 record overall with stops at his alma mater, Lenoir-Rhyne, The Citadel and James Madison. Athlon Sports even listed him as “a rising star in the Group of 5 ranks.”
Houston and his staff haven’t taken their foot off the gas, even after falling to Cincinnati. He tweeted out on Sunday that the ECU Pirate Club has already sold over 1,000 tickets for the Military Bowl.