Report: University of Miami targeting Oregon coach Mario Cristobal

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·3 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
An animated Oregon coach Mario Cristobal complains to the officials on the sidelines during the second half of the Oregon-Oregon State game at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore., on Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021.
An animated Oregon coach Mario Cristobal complains to the officials on the sidelines during the second half of the Oregon-Oregon State game at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore., on Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021.

After weeks of speculation, it appears the University of Miami is eyeing Oregon coach Mario Cristobal as its next football coach.

According to the Miami Herald, the Miami Hurricanes hope Cristobal will accept their coaching position. While the Hurricanes haven't officially fired current coach Manny Diaz, it appears that could happen in the coming days.

On Nov. 15, Miami fired athletic director Blake James after 17 years at the university — including eight as athletics director. The firing came two days after the Hurricanes lost their rivalry game at Florida State.

"The University of Miami and Director of Athletics Blake James today mutually agreed to part ways," the school wrote in a press release. "James' 17 years at the University — including eight as athletics director — were marked by class and integrity. He served in several ACC and NCAA leadership roles and earned national recognition from his peers during his time with the Hurricanes.

For local stories that matter, subscribe today.

"A national search for the University's next athletics director will begin immediately."

James was the person responsible for hiring Diaz in 2019 after the sudden retirement of previous coach Mark Richt. During his three years in Coral Gables, Diaz has a 21-15 record; the Hurricanes haven't won more than eight games in any season.

It is unknown if Cristobal would have any interest in the Hurricanes coaching position, but this would present the opportunity to have a homecoming for one of Miami's native sons. Cristobal was born and raised in Miami, attending Christopher Columbus High School.

He also was an offensive lineman for the Hurricanes from 1988-92 having been recruited by Jimmy Johnson and played for Dennis Erickson. During his time in Miami, Cristobal was on two of Miami's teams (1989, 1991) that won national championships.

After his playing days were over, Cristobal was on the Hurricanes coaching staff, first as a graduate assistant (1998-00) and later as a tight end and offensive line coach (2004-06).

In 2007, Cristobal became the second head coach in Florida International University history and, at 36 years old, became the first Cuban-American head coach in the FBS.

Cristobal lasted at FIU for six seasons before he was fired after a 27-47 record with the school.

Since becoming Oregon's coach, Cristobal has had a lot of success with the Ducks. He has a 35-12 record, including two Pac-12 championships and a third appearance in Friday night's game against Utah. The Ducks won the Rose Bowl following the 2019 season and appeared in the Fiesta Bowl after the 2020 season under Cristobal. Oregon also won the 2018 Redbox Bowl in Cristobal's first year as head coach.

Recently, Cristobal flew back to Miami after Oregon's 38-29 victory against Oregon State because his mother, Clara, is battling an undisclosed illness. Cristobal flew back to be with the team Sunday night in preparation for the Pac-12 championship game.

"I have to very quickly hop on a plane and see my mom," Cristobal said after the Oregon State game. "Keep her in your prayers — she got pretty sick pretty quickly, and I gotta go see her. I just wanted to make sure I got out there. So, that'll be a touch and go for me while I work, of course, the entire time."

Contact Antwan Staley at astaley@registerguard.com and follow him on Twitter @antwanstaley.

This article originally appeared on Register-Guard: Miami Hurricanes targeting Oregon football coach Mario Cristobal