Norvell is reported candidate for K-State opening
Coach: I’ve got one of best jobs in country
As the Memphis football team is preparing for the Birmingham Bowl on Dec. 22 against Wake Forest, the coaching carousel has begun swirling around head coach Mike Norvell and his staff.
The Tigers saw tight ends coach Will Hall leave this week to become Tulane’s offensive coordinator. Norvell’s name continues to be in multiple reports for head coaching vacancies, the most recent being Kansas State.
On Friday, after the Tigers' first practice since losing in the AAC championship game to UCF, Norvell echoed what he said last week when his name came up in connection for the now-filled vacancies at Louisville, Colorado and Texas Tech.
“I’ve got one of the best jobs in the country regardless of conference or place. I’m extremely happy here and I think we’ve got a special opportunity for what we’re building,” Norvell said. “We’ve got a great situation and we’re working extremely hard to finish this year and put our guys out winning a bowl championship.”
Kansas State paid previous coach Bill Snyder $3.5 million this past season, his 27th with the program. Norvell made $2.6 million this year at Memphis and his buyout would be $500,000 if he were to leave for another job.
Not only is Norvell is the highest paid non-Power 5 coach in the country, his coaching staff is also the highest paid among non Power Five programs.
Since Norvell arrived at Memphis after the 2015 season, he's had to deal with attrition on his staff. After his first season, he watched then-offensive coordinator Chip Long leave to become Notre Dame's offensive coordinator.
Last season, four assistant coaches were hired by Power-5 programs, including offensive coordinator Darrell Dickey at Texas A&M.
A report emerged Friday that defensive coordinator Chris Ball is a candidate for the vacant head coaching position at Northern Arizona. Norvell mentioned that other assistants had been approached for job offers but turned them down.
"It's something that we understand as part of success," Norvell said.
Ball confirmed that he had been approached by Northern Arizona but said that he had not made a decision.
"It's an honor but nothing has been set in stone. I love it here at Memphis, my family loves it here at Memphis," said Ball.