Ex-NFL coach Kliff Kingsbury's name pops up in college football coaching carousel rumors


Kliff Kingsbury did not return to the Arizona Cardinals following the 2022 season after a 4-13 record and only one playoff appearance over four seasons of coaching there.

He took the 2023 season to go to USC and become the offensive analyst and quarterback coach, and it appeared his name is being thrown around as a potential candidate in Division I college football. This time, it is with the Houston Cougars.

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Kliff Kingsbury vs Notre Dame

USC Trojans senior offensive analyst Kliff Kingsbury talks to his players during the college football game between the USC Trojans and Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Oct. 14, 2023, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Indiana. (Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Houston fired Dana Holgorsen on Sunday after five seasons. He was 31-28 in those five seasons and finished 2023 with a 4-8 record and 2-7 in the team’s first season in the Big 12 Conference.

“Over the course of his five seasons with the Cougars, Dana made strides in our football program in many ways and laid the groundwork for our transition to the Big 12 Conference,” Houston’s vice president of athletics Chris Pezman said in a statement.

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Dana Holgorsen in November 2023

Houston coach Dana Holgorsen yells at the officials during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Oklahoma State on Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

“Ultimately, the results on the field fell below our standards of excellence. We are grateful to Dana for his efforts and commitment to our student-athletes and we wish him the very best in his future endeavors.”

The Houston Chronicle named Kingsbury as a potential replacement for Holgorsen. USC finished the regular season with a top 5 passing offense, averaging 329.8 passing yards per game behind likely top NFL draft pick Caleb Williams. The Trojans were 11th in total yards per game.

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Oklahoma Sooners fans have also clamored for him to become the school’s offensive coordinator after Jeff Lebby left to for Mississippi State, according to Trojans Wire.

Kliff Kingsbury with Cardinals

Kliff Kingsbury looks on during the first half against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium on Jan. 8, 2023 in Santa Clara, California. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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Kingsbury was 35-40 when he was the head coach at Texas Tech from 2013 to 2018. He was 1-2 in bowl games, only winning the Holiday Bowl in his first season.

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