Former National Championship winning head coach Les Miles will soon have a new home. Miles has been connected to the open coaching position at the University of Kansas for a few days now. On Sunday morning, Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports spoke with Miles and confirmed he will become the next head coach at Kansas.
Miles comes to Kansas with quite a pedigree. He was a consistent winner at LSU with his teams never dipping below eight wins in a season. He won multiple bowl games, a national title in 2007, and appeared in the 2011 championship game. The problem was that there was always tension at LSU that he wasn’t doing quite enough in his later years, particularly as a recruiter, and then, four games into the 2016-17 season, he was fired. Kansas will hope they can take what worked at LSU and make it their own.
“It’s a great university,” Miles said while en route from Topeka to Lawrence with his wife Kathy.
This will not be the first time Miles has coached in the Big 12. Before LSU, Miles coached at Oklahoma State for four seasons and had three bowl game appearances. He’s not completely unfamiliar with the Big 12 and that’s important because it can be difficult recruiting in that area of the country. He will no longer have the very fertile grounds of Louisiana to work with — although you can bet he’ll do his best to get kids from there — and at 65 there are questions about how hard he’ll go.
Kansas also feels like a bit of a last chance for Miles. Typically a coach with all the success Miles had LSU should be able to find a more appealing job over one of the hardest out there. This tells us that Miles may not be as sought over as one would think and if he fails in Kansas, there may not be any power jobs left for him to take. He’ll need to make a good impression at Kansas if he’s ever going to jump back up into a more high profile coaching job, but if nothing else, he brings a sense of stability and a respected voice to Lawrence, even if it’s only for a bit, as they look to build a stronger foundation to their program.