The Jason Garrett era may be close to coming to an end. The Dallas Cowboys are in desperate need of a change. Former Florida and Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer seems to be a strong candidate for the job. However, Lincoln Riley, the current head coach of the Oklahoma Sooners, is also reportedly linked with the Cowboys head coaching job.
Riley has coached the Sooners since 2017. Succeeding Bob Stoops, Riley has kept the Sooners in a spectacular winning form. There’s no doubt that Riley is an excellent coach and works well with players. His resume shows he can turn things in Dallas. Furthermore, Riley’s odds of becoming Dallas’ next head coach are high.
What Makes Riley A Good Candidate?
Riley already has a reputation for succeeding as a head coach. Leading the Sooners to the Big 12 title and the College Football Playoffs in each of his first three years speaks for itself. In addition, coaching two Heisman Trophy winners( Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray) is just another accolade that impacts Riley’s resume.
Riley has been coaching for a long time now. Serving under the likes of Stoops and Mike Leach means Riley has learned from some of the best head coaches in history. That’s how Riley developed such a great coaching philosophy. In other words, Riley has truly learned well.
Furthermore, his expertise can help current offensive coordinator Kellen Moore. With Riley’s knowledge and experience with Air Raid offensive schemes, he and Moore can put together a unique offensive playbook. At the same time, Moore can learn a lot from Riley.
Riley has a convincing track record. Dallas needs a coach of his caliber. Riley certainly has what it takes to turn the Cowboys into a winning team. Furthermore, he’s perfectly capable of making them title contenders. Under his leadership, the players can learn discipline and develop a winning mentality. In other words, the Cowboys can truly become America’s Team once again under Riley.
Bringing in a coach with no experience in the NFL isn’t new to the Cowboys. Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer are perfect examples. Jerry Jones was very familiar with both Johnson and Switzer, considering they were all teammates at Arkansas. Johnson and Switzer were successful College Football coaches with very convincing resumes. A combined four national championships between the two. Furthermore, both were able to win the Super Bowl.
The difference between Riley and Johnson and Switzer is experience as both Johnson and Switzer came to Dallas with at least ten years(as a head coach) of experience under their belt. Riley is wrapping up his third year as a head coach. In Riley’s case, while his experience as a head coach isn’t the best, his accomplishments do the talking. In other words, Riley’s accomplishments, coaching philosophy, offensive schemes, and track record make him a perfect candidate for the Cowboys head coaching job.
The Cowboys’ 2019 season has been disappointing for the most part. Regardless, they’re still in contention for the NFC East title. However, their poor overall performance shows just how bad the team is. The team needs a fresh start. And that fresh start starts with changes in the coaching staff.
Oklahoma, on the other hand, is preparing to take on #1 LSU later this month. Riley is looking to win his first playoff win and lead OU to the National Championship. In Riley’s case, adding another accolade to his resume will only convince Dallas further to consider him as their next head coach. Coaching Dallas can be a career boost for him.
The question is whether or not Riley is willing to leave Oklahoma, assuming he interviews with Dallas and is offered the job. Regardless, Riley ought to be on Dallas’ interviewee list.
At this point, it’s safe to say that Lincoln Riley is Dallas’ best hope.