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Syracuse Football: Who Might Dino Babers Hire on His Offensive Staff?

These are names that could be helpful. Or not... We really don't have any leads here.

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Now that the Syracuse Orange have hired Bowling Green's Dino Babers to take over the program, he'll obviously need to hire a staff under him. While we don't know the budget Babers and Syracuse will be working with to fill out the staff, we can at least take a guess on who he might be targeting to help him succeed here. That's to emphasize: These are DEFINITELY guesses.

Bowling Green Staff

Mike Lynch, Co-Offensive Coordinator, Bowling Green

Over the past two years at Bowling Green under Babers, Lynch has managed to get quality production out of a minimally-utilized running game, still keeping the Falcons in the top half of the nation's rushing stats. While he assists with calling plays, he largely focuses on the team's running backs, which averaged over 180 yards per game this past season. Lynch was a carry-over coach from Babers's time at Eastern Illinois, but seems to have adjusted just fine. Babers has had a ton of help establishing an elite Bowling Green offense these past two years, and Lynch is definitely one of the reasons why. He's not a long-time Babers connection, but is likely on the short list for the new SU offensive coordinator gig.

Sean Lewis, Co-Offensive Coordinator, Bowling Green

Lewis has a whole lot less experience than Lynch, but has risen quickly through the ranks since finishing up his playing career at Wisconsin, taking on more and more responsibility each of the last four seasons under Babers. Though he handles quarterbacks and play-calling with the Falcons right now, you'd think he's still a little green to take on the latter at Syracuse. That he's a former QB and experienced with several record-setting situates him well to potentially take over the quarterbacks coach role. If Babers offers, he's pretty likely to come with.

Tom Freeman, Assistant Coach -- Offensive Line/Tight Ends, Bowling Green

Freeman's no rising star, and actually possess a pretty extensive, 30-year coaching resume. But he's been linked to Babers for the large majority of his career and that makes it likely he joins Dino once again here in Syracuse. From 1984 (Hawaii), Freeman has joined Babers at stops at Arizona State, Purdue, Pittsburgh and Eastern Illinois, plus his current role at Bowling Green. He's had experience recruiting all around the country, especially in the Midwest. Though he hasn't had the same experience recruiting for the spread at Babers's Texas stops.

Andrew Sowder, Assistant Coach -- Outside Receiver Bowling Green

On top of handling wide receivers and some special teams duty under Babers nearly every year since 2009 (Baylor, Eastern Illinois, Bowling Green), the former Baylor Bears' player has handled Bowling Green recruiting duties as well. He's not necessarily a "fast riser," but rather a promising young (28 years old) coach who's been with Babers nearly every year and that's unlikely to stop now. Any sort of recruiting and/or special teams role could suit him well.

Extended Dino Babers Coaching Tree

Sterlin Gilbert, Co-Offensive Coordinator, Tulsa

Gilbert hasn't been around the college coaching game long, but has been on the move a lot since Babers first called him up from the Texas high school ranks in 2012. Ever since then, he's spent two successful years at Eastern Illinois, another productive one at Bowling Green and then this past year, he moved on to Tulsa as co-offensive coordinator. Under Phil Montgomery (another Art Briles protege like Babers), Gilbert had the Golden Hurricanes offense ranked 14th overall in FBS this season. No guarantee Syracuse CAN get him. And he doesn't have much local recruiting experience. But he's got more success at the FBS level than most recent Orange OCs.

Jon Embree, Tight Ends Coach, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The former Colorado head coach and Babers worked together for a few years at UCLA, and while it's been over a decade since they were last on the same staff, there's a shot this is a possible hire at the right price. A lot would depend on Embree's status with the Bucs as well. Don't hold your breath here. Just wanted to make sure it was thrown out there.


Calvin Magee, Co-Offensive Coordinator, Arizona

Magee is actually a name pulled from the extended Scott Shafer coaching tree that we explored last year. And with his extensive experience in this part of the country (spent several years at both Pitt and West Virginia), as well as Florida (played for the Bucs, coached high school in Tampa and coached with USF), there's at least some thought he could come back East. Despite a "down" year for the Wildcats this season, his offense still ranked 15th overall in FBS. With his tight end expertise, Magee could be a great hire if (slim chance) we can get him here.

David Walker, Unemployed

Walker's one of the best running backs in Syracuse University history and possesses plenty of coaching experience in the area. After graduating from SU, he came back to coach there from 1995-2003, then had another extended stay at Pitt from 2004 through 2010. He spent four seasons coaching running backs with the Indianapolis Colts before being fired last year. He's no home run, but if Babers was interested, Walker would be an easy get that knows the landscape and has a connection to the school.

John Reagan, Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach, Penn

Another Syracuse alum, Reagan's made the rounds since his playing days with the Orange, coaching in the Southwest, Midwest and of course, Northeast. Just a couple years ago, he was a rising name while coaching up Rice's record-setting offense from 2011-13. But his one-year stop at Kansas seemed to slow that climb a bit. In 2015, he was at Penn and led the Quakers to a top-40 offense in all of FCS. You'd assume he'd want to stay an offensive coordinator if he were to come back to Syracuse, but there's no guarantees there. If he could take on the offensive line and recruiting the Northeast (especially the New Jersey area, as he does now), that could be a high quality addition.

Brian Scott, Offensive Coordinator, Old Dominion

Scott's not a Syracuse link, but he's had such a successful tenure at ODU (and recruiting Virginia and North Carolina), that he's hard to ignore. He'd want an offensive coordinator gig, which makes this a long shot unless there's enough overlap between his scheme and Babers's. If for some reason he was released from his role with the Monarchs, that makes it a hell of a lot more likely SU could grab him.


Again, that's definitely not all the names we (specifically Babers) could be looking at. But at least it's a sample of what could be on the table. Have others -- related to the Babers tree or not? Toss them in the comments below.