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Mounain West football coaches are in demand for Nebraska vacancy

What Mountain West coaches are being discussed as possible candidates at Nebraska?

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

This is the time of year that successful Mountain West coaches are in demand and possibly even poached by bigger programs with much larger resources. Wyoming's Craig Bohl has already been linked to the Nebraska Cornhuskers job, and that has to do with him being a former defensive coordinator.

However, there are other outlets who are saying that Utah State's Matt Wells, Colorado State's Jim McElwain and Air Force's Troy Calhoun. None of the three have ties to the Midwest one bit, but all three have done good jobs at their respective schools.

Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports lists reasons why all three would make a solid choice to take over the Nebraska program:

Another sitting head coach who would look like a good style fit is Air Force's Troy Calhoun, who is 48 and riding a very strong season where his team is 9-3 and just beat Colorado State. He's actually a lot more than just a triple-option guy, too, having been an NFL coordinator. He's also taking Air Force to its seventh bowl in eight seasons. That is a very impressive accomplishment.

The coach Calhoun just beat, Colorado State's Jim McElwain, figures to be on NU's radar too. He's 53 and 18-8 the past two years. He's also spent three seasons in the Big Ten while at Michigan State a decade ago.

Matt Wells is another guy on a lot of people's radars. He has only been a head coach two seasons at Utah State but has impressed a bunch of folks, going 18-9. The 41-year-old won nine games again this season despite having to start four different QBs.

Over at they have a mention about McElwain, plus Bohl:

Jim McElwain: McElwain is 22-16 in his three seasons at Colorado State, but he's gone from four wins in 2012 to eight in 2013 and 10 wins this season. He's also a member of the Nick Saban coaching tree as he spent four seasons as Alabama's offensive coordinator before taking the Colorado State job. His contract with the Rams does have a large buyout, though, so that could remove him from serious consideration.

Craig Bohl: Bohl just finished his first year at Wyoming, but before he took that job he spent 11 seasons at North Dakota State and won three FCS national championships before leaving. He also spent eight seasons at Nebraska as an assistant from 1995 to 2002, and was the defensive coordinator his final three seasons there. Would Bohl leave Wyoming after only a season to return to Lincoln?

Then there are the odds from Bovada who list the odds for who will be the next Nebraska head coach. This list includes McElwain and surprisingly the Aggies' Wells is on this list and no Bohl.

  • Scott Frost 5/2
  • Greg Schiano 15/4
  • Tom Herman 4/1
  • Pat Narduzzi 9/2
  • Jim McElwain 5/1
  • Jerry Kill 13/2
  • Matt Wells 7/1

The Nebraska job likely will not go to a Mountain West coach since the program wants to attempt to regain its swagger from the 1990s when Tom Osborne was running along the sidelines and dominating and winning national titles.