Florida International U

He was fired by FIU five years ago. Now he’ll be named Oregon’s new head coach, reports say

In the rain before FIU hosted Louisville in 2012, then-FIU coach Mario Cristobal talks with then-Louisville coach Charlie Strong. Strong’s now head coach at South Florida and a report has Cristobal about to be named head coach at Oregon.
In the rain before FIU hosted Louisville in 2012, then-FIU coach Mario Cristobal talks with then-Louisville coach Charlie Strong. Strong’s now head coach at South Florida and a report has Cristobal about to be named head coach at Oregon. Getty Images

Five years and two days after being fired as FIU’s football coach, at least one report declares former Hurricanes offensive lineman and assistant coach Mario Cristobal will be named Oregon’s head coach soon.

NBC Sports Northwest Aaron Fentress reports Cristobal’s ascension to his second head coaching job, this one at a Power 5 program. When Cristobal coached FIU, he starting amid a 23-game losing streak in 2007 before taking the team to consecutive bowl appearances in 2010 and 2011. After a 3-9 2012 season, FIU athletic director Pete Garcia fired Cristobal, with whom he often clashed.

After four seasons as an Alabama assistant coach, Cristobal spent the 2017 season as Oregon’s offensive line coach and run coordinator under Willie Taggart, a former Sun Belt rival when Cristobal was at FIU and Taggart was at Western Kentucky. As the coach-swapping season began — Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher to Texas A&M, Taggart to Florida State — Cristobal was elevated to interim coach for Oregon’s bowl game. But he quickly got the support of Ducks players via a petition signed by 70 players.

There’s been no official announcement from Oregon. The Twitter sign-on Freezing Cold Takes recalled the Super Bowl Week that started with Cristobal all but gone to Rutgers and Cristobal firmly at FIU by midweek.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559, @DavidJNeal

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