clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

P.J. Fleck a possible target for Rutgers Scarlet Knights

The Scarlet Knights are rumored to want to trade in swords for oars, but will the boat row to Piscataway, or stay put in the Zoo?

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Silly Season has been in full effect for awhile, and Saturday only provided more fodder, as more coaches were let go from their jobs, including Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood. Rutgers is now one of many open FBS head coaching jobs.

The question with these sorts of things is: who gets to fill it? Well, Western Michigan head coach P.J. Fleck has been tabbed as a candidate for the Rutgers vacancy, according to many experts. lists P.J. Fleck as one of the potential favorites for the Rutgers job. His is listed along with Greg Schiano, and Al Golden.

Also of note, Griffin Whitmer from SB Nation's On The Banks stated that "P.J. Fleck is our new head coach to lose."

P.J. Fleck seems like the perfect fit at Rutgers for a variety of reasons. Fleck is young, fiery, has ties to the Rutgers football program and has proven mettle as a head coach that can turn the culture of a program around in a short time. Although he still has a losing record (16-21), the last two seasons have been much more successful than his rookie 1-11 season.

In 2013, Western Michigan pulled off the surprise hire of Fleck, who was relatively unheard of prior to his hire, allowing him to become the youngest head coach in FBS history. It was immediately evident that Fleck was going to bring excitement back to the Western Michigan football program. He has implemented a team motto (the infamous #RowTheBoat,) adapted the oar as a symbol for team unity, and even added an in-stadium DJ for games.

After a disastrous first year, Fleck turned the program around for an NCAA-leading 7-win improvement over 2013, and was named the 2014 MAC Coach of the Year. The Broncos finished 8-5, losing in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl to Air Force. Again Fleck and staff signed an impressive recruiting class.

Fleck followed up a successful MAC Coach of the Year campaign with another competitive season for the Broncos, who will most likely head to their second straight bowl game. P.J. Fleck led the Broncos to their first ever win over a ranked opponent. defeating No. 24 Toledo at the Glass Bowl 35-30 to finish with a 7-5 record.

Before P.J. Fleck was the head coach of Western Michigan, he was a longtime assistant coach under coach Greg Schiano. In 2010, Fleck was signed to Rutgers staff as a wide receivers coach. Fleck stayed on the Rutgers staff until 2012 where he followed Schiano to the NFL to coach the receivers in Tampa Bay.

While there are reports that WMU is prepared to make Fleck a Godfather-esque offer, Fleck's name will continue to circulate around the rumor mill until pen is put onto paper.