The Detroit News published an article about this possible candidate. Thomas Wilcher is the head coach for Detroit Cass Tech Technicians, one of the better-recognized football programs in the greater Detroit area. The program has recently won back-to-back Michigan state championships at the D1 level and are on a 20-game winning streak, outscoring opponents a total of 658-188 (average 32.9-9.4) in that span. Wilcher was a running back for the University of Michigan from 1983-86 under Bo Schembechler. He's been at Cass Tech for 16 years and has pondered about coaching at the collegiate level. A likely candidate that says that "you can win at Eastern Michigan... just need to find someone who has a system, puts that system in place and make sure they understand what they want to do in that system."
There are currently two players on Eastern Michigan's roster that are products of Cass Tech football: wide receiver Matt Brown and defensive back Quan Pace.
Of course this name would pop up. Another head coach, but this being in the Downriver area. Adams is the coach over at Roosevelt Wyandotte High School. Unlike Cass Tech, Wyandotte hasn't won a state championship since 1951, but has helped groom EMU linebacker Hunter Matt. But the real reason why Adams' name has been thrown out there is because he was the quarterback for Eastern Michigan in 1987, when the program won their last bowl game.
Not sure if he was at the last home game against Western Michigan, but he tweeted this out, which was either 1) out of loyalty or 2) a teaser. Either way, he should not underestimate the power of autocorrect. Seriously though, "fottball"?
On November 17, 2012, Western Michigan fired their head coach immediately after losing to the Eagles at home 27-22. That man was Bill Cubit. Now an offensive coordinator for the fifth time in his long coaching career dating back to 1975, this time with Illinois. Before he took that offensive coordinating position, he was one of the finalists to be the head coach for FCS program Western Illinois University, but voluntarily withdrew his name from consideration. As the head coach of Western Michigan, he had an overall 51-47 record, losing all 3 bowl games he led the Broncos to (2006 International, 2008 Texas, 2011 Little Caesar's Pizza).
Paul Winters played running back for Akron from 1976-1979 rushing for 2,613 yards, seventh on their all-time rushing list. He was the running backs coach for Akron, Toledo and Wisconsin Universities, then came back to Akron to serve as their running backs coach and offensive coordinator from 1994-2003. In December of 2003, he accepted the head coaching position at Wayne State University, a division 2 program in downtown Detroit. In 2011, his Warriors team clinched playoff berth and lost to Pittsburgh State in the National Championship game, winning the NCAA Division 2 Coach of the Year Award. Immediately after the 2011 season, he was offered the head coaching position at Akron, but he declined the offer.
Haywood has a lot of experience, but a lot of baggage. Previously contacted by EMU Athletic Director Heather Lyke in late October, Haywood is very interested in the job opening. Having not coached since 2010 at Miami University where he had an overall head coaching record of 10-15, he led the RedHawks to a 1-11 season in his first season, but turned it around and went 8-4 the next season, winning the 2010 MAC Championship over Northern Illinois. He would then go on to accept the head coaching job for the Pittsburgh Panthers, but was arrested on December 31, 2010 on felony domestic violence charges, fired from the new job hours later. His charges were dismissed in February 2012.
He's had various position-focused coaching jobs at Army, Ohio, Ball State, LSU, Texas and Notre Dame.
A former running backs coach at EMU in 2009 and now with the Buffalo Bills. He's from Inkster, Michigan and played for Michigan in the early 90s before being drafted by the New York Giants in 1995 in the first round. In the article I previously hyperlinked in my notes about Wilcher, he told the Detroit News back in January that he "would love to come home and be a head coach of a Division 1 football program".
Another Michigan alum on this list of candidates. He played quarterback for the Wolverines from 1993-1996 who suffered a shoulder injury that ended his playing career earlier than he hoped for. He immediately joined Michigan's coaching staff as a grad assistant and quarterbacks coach until 1999. He would then be the quarterbacks coach for the Central Michigan Chippewas (2000-2001), Michigan again (2002-2007), NFL's Detroit Lions (2008), Florida Gators (2009-2010), and added on offensive coordinator duties with his quarterback coaching roles for the Temple Owls (2011), Auburn Tigers (2012) and now Virginia Tech Hokies. He helped coach eventual NFL Draft Picks Tom Brady, Chad Henne, Tim Tebow, Brian Griese, Drew Henson and John Navarre.
This candidate is currently the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. A graduate of Millikin University, he was the linebackers coach at EMU in 1998-1999 before going on to be the defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach at Grand Valley State University from 2000-2003, then became their head coach from 2004-2009 with an overall record of 74-7. In 2005 and 2006, Martin led the team to undefeated seasons, winning the Division 2 National Championship and had a 40-game win streak that would snap in the playoffs of 2007.
Like Ron English was, Mark Farley is the current head coach and defensive coordinator of his alma matter, the University of Northern Iowa Panthers. At 50 years old, his 13-year overall head coaching record is 108-51. He has also been the linebackers coach at UNI from 1989-1996 and at Kansas University from 1997-2000.