“Sources close to the team have told me that Neal Brown explicitly announced to the team that he is staying at Troy and will coach the Trojans next season,” Mindel wrote.
Mindel’s report is basically confirmed by this tweet the Troy football account sent out Wednesday which showed Brown meeting with his team:
Brown reportedly interviewed for the Arizona head coaching job Monday.
You have to wonder if him staying at Troy means he decided he didn’t want the Arizona job or if he just was not Arizona’s preferred candidate.
The reaction to Brown’s candidacy was not well-received by Arizona fans (by our measure, at least), but he was a qualified candidate, to be sure.
Brown, 37, has a 25-13 record in three seasons (2015-17) at Troy. The Trojans went 11-2 in 2017, including a win at LSU, and won the Sun Belt. Neal was the conference’s Coach of the Year.
In 2016, Troy went 10-3 under Brown which was the nation’s best turnaround, and included the first top-25 ranking in school and Sun Belt history.
But there were a couple not-so-appealing things about him, like the reported $3 million buyout it would require to hire him, plus the fact he has never coached west of Lubbock, Texas.
If we’re going based on this report by FootballScoop, it appears Arizona’s candidates at this point are Kevin Sumlin, Mark Helfrich, Jedd Fisch, Marcel Yates, and Beau Baldwin.
Rick Neuheisel was listed as a possibility too, but that was quickly shot down.
It is not clear who the frontrunner is, but it should not be too much longer before an official announcement is made.