Now, one more name has been thrown into that mix: San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman.
According to NFL Insider Jason La Canfora, Penn State’s search committee has an interview set with the New Jersey native, although the exact date and location of the interview is unknown.
Penn State has interview set with 49ers OC Greg Roman
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) January 8, 2014
Roman has been the 49ers’ offensive coordinator since 2011. Prior to that, he held three NFL jobs from 1995-2007 and was the offensive coordinator for his high school alma mater in 2008. He then joined current-Niners head coach Jim Harbaugh’s staff at Stanford as the school’s offensive coordinator in 2009 and made the jump to the NFL with Harbaugh in 2011.
Under his tutelage, the Niners and quarterback Colin Kaepernick have gone from one of the league’s worst offenses to a respectable offense, featuring the third best rushing attack in the league in 2013-14. The team made it to the Super Bowl last season, and are making a run for the Super Bowl this year.
Roman was reportedly on Penn State’s wishlist in 2011, when the school was looking for its replacement for Joe Paterno. Despite calling Penn State “a lifetime job,” Roman was passed over for Bill O’Brien.
Roman, like O’Brien, is considered a tough, blue collar head coach with an innovative offensive mind. He has proven he can coach an offense in college and the pros, and is a hot commodity in the coaching profession.
Finding the time to interview Roman may be difficult, as the Niners are still in the playoffs and all of his attention is likely on the team’s showdown with the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. However, if Penn State is willing to wait for Roman’s schedule to open up, his experience and football IQ could make him an interesting candidate for the job.
Update: 1:04 p.m. — According to Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports, Roman already interviewed for the Penn State job earlier in the week.
— Bruce Feldman (@BFeldmanCBS) January 8, 2014