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Kolpack: Once Bohl is gone, who's next?

FARGO – If North Dakota State keeps winning and the successor to Craig Bohl is determined sooner rather than later, the Bison could find themselves in an uncommon position: Having a head coach who is already signed to be the next Wyoming coach, Bohl, while having their next head coach waiting for the season to get over before taking control.

NDSU athletic director Gene Taylor said it’s possible a coach could be hired before the FCS national title game Jan. 4 if the Bison should make it that far. In that case, Bohl would still remain as the NDSU head coach.

“I imagine that would be a little unusual and a little odd,” Taylor said.

Taylor said he hasn’t set a timetable for a successor, saying he first needs to talk with NDSU President Dean Bresciani. He did not rule out any current assistant coaches as possible replacements, with most likely appearing to be offensive coordinator Brent Vigen and defensive coordinator Chris Klieman. All of the Bison assistant coaches are still with the team.

“I’d be foolish to overlook some of the staff we have on this team,” Taylor said. “But I want to get through this as quickly as we can.”

It’s a certainty Bohl will take some of the assistants with him to Wyoming, but just how many is unknown.

“I met with the staff, I said ‘you guys need to be committed to this program and these players until the end of the season,’” Taylor said. “I need your focus on NDSU, not anything else. And they all committed, yep we’re here.”

If the position is opened to a national search, it’s time to play the Who Would Be the Best Candidate game. Here’s an early hypothetical list, all with some sort of FCS, NDSU or Midwest ties.

-- Scottie Hazelton, Nevada defensive coordinator and former NDSU defensive coordinator.

-- Brian Ward, defensive coordinator at Western Illinois and a former Bison assistant coach.

-- Rob Ambrose, head coach at Towson State.

-- Tracy Claeys, defensive coordinator, Minnesota.

-- Matt Limegrover, offensive coordinator, Minnesota.

-- Tim Beck, offensive coordinator, Nebraska.

-- Jeff Voris, head coach, Butler.

-- John Wristen, head coach Colorado State-Pueblo.

-- Jimmy Burrow, defensive coordinator, Ohio University and former Bison assistant.

-- Glenn Caruso, head coach, University of St. Thomas and former Bison assistant.

Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack can be reached at (701) 241-5546. Kolpack’s NDSU media blog can be found at


Jeff Kolpack
Jeff Kolpack covers North Dakota State athletics, the Fargo Marathon and golf for The Forum. His blog can be accessed at On the radio, Kolpack & Izzo sports talk show runs from 9-11 a.m. every Saturday morning. April through August, the WDAY Golf Show with Jeff Kolpack runs from 8-9 a.m.