A few weeks ago, my brother mentioned (on another well-known VT message board) the name Chris Klenakis as a possible replacement for Bryan Stinespring as offensive coordinator. I thought nothing more of it until today as I continued to ponder the future of our offense and our dwindling options as the proven coordinators that are available have already been picked off. I started to dig, wondering who this guy was...
The pistol has been well-chronicled by French and others here on TKP. To be short, it's fast-hitting, power-running, shotgun/spread hybrid. We've all read French on the Bench. I need not go into it any further. It is becoming quite the popular offensive style, even being used in NFL more and more.
What you may not know is that it was basically invented by Chris Ault, the current Nevada head coach AND, Chris Klenakis, his offensive coordinator at the time. Chris Klenakis coached at Nevada from 1990-2011, minus a four year stint. His last six years there were as the offensive coordinator/oline coach. He is obviously a very loyal guy, something that Frank Beamer holds in very high regard. He even shunned Texas away because he wanted to stay loyal to his old teammate and (then) current head coach, Bobby Petrino. Yes -- This may be the mark against him. But ... we've all been looking for an offensive identity, an offensive coordinator who is a master of his craft? As tacky as it sort of is, this guy knows the pistol well enough to sell itin DVD format.
We can afford the guy. According to this article, he was making $266,000 at Arkansas in January of this year. Surely, we can afford more than that to an offensive coordinator AND offensive line coach?
Look at the stats from 2007-2011 while he was OC at Nevada:
How is this guy available? I gather that he took off for new opportunity (in the SEC) and to coach with his old teammate and buddy, while likely getting a pay raise. Obviously, Bobby Petrino screwed that up for Klenakis and everyone else on his staff. Bielema has decided to hire Sam Pittman, from Tennessee, as his offensive line coach, leaving Klenakis unemployed. I don't expect him to be unemployed long. He was extremely successful at Nevada. The stats prove it and the pistol is a very balanced offense that is centered around quick hitting power running (what Coach Frank Beamer really wants). He is very loyal, KNOWS the system that he coaches, is available, is probably affordable.
Aside from a few other, not-as-experienced choices, he seems like one of our best options. Imagine a true pistol offense on the east coast... So, what are we waiting on?
Seems like a hard-nosed coach and a stand-up guy: