Northern Illinois won the MAC championship Friday night. Head coach Dave Doeren boarded a plane for Raleigh on Saturday.
Doeren hasn't been one of the hot names during the coaching search, but he was mentioned by a few people here and there over the last few months, and would have made sense as a fall back guy if the Hogs whiffed on their top candidates. Many of the reporters covering the search say the coaches at the top of Arkansas' list are Gary Patterson, Mike Gundy, and Chris Petersen, in some order, but who knows if any of those three will take the job. Beyond those three, who knows where this thing could go.
Previously the defensive coordinator at Wisconsin for a few years, Doeren spent the last two years at Northern Illinois, winning the MAC title both times and compiling a 23-4 overall record. The Huskies ranked highly in several offensive and defensive categories.
Good hire for NC State. It will be interesting to see how the MAC master translates to BCS level leagues.