Sonny Dykes doesn’t have a stellar record as a head coach, but Baylor has reportedly turned its attention to the Cal head man. Original target Chad Morris signed an extension with SMU on Wednesday, meaning the Bears have to focus their attention elsewhere. Dykes appears to be their guy. And, while he’s not Morris, Dykes is actually a really good fit for what Baylor wants to do.
He is 19-30 in his four years at Cal and his team was just 5-7 this year after a promising start. But in 2015, with No. 1 pick Jared Goff under center, Dykes led the Bears to an 8-5 record and their first bow win since 2008. Prior to his time at Berkeley, he was the head coach at Louisiana Tech from 2010-2012, where he posted a record of 22-15.
So why is Baylor so hot on Dykes’ tail? Well, he’s a native of Big Spring, Texas with deep ties to the area. He’s a Texas Tech alum (where he played baseball, not football), who also coached at Pearce High School in Richardson, Texas and Navarro Junior College in Corsicana. His teams are known for their wide-open offenses, just like Art Briles ran before he was fired. With the athletes the state of Texas could provide him, Dykes could put up huge offensive numbers at Baylor.
This season, the disciple of Hal Mumme ran Cal’s version of the “Air Raid” offense to near-perfection. The Bears ranked third in FBS in passing yards (358.8 per game), 11th in total offense (513.2 yards per game) and 24th in scoring (37.1 points per game). Unfortunately, Dykes couldn’t get his defense to stop anyone. Cal ranked 125th in total defense (518.3 yards per game) and next to last in scoring defense (42.6 points per game).
Obviously Dykes isn’t perfect. The 47-year-old has a career head coaching record of 41-45 and his teams at Cal have been plagued by inconsistency. But the Bears did knock off two then-top 25 teams this year (Texas and Utah) before a four-game losing steak (to USC, Washington, Washington State and Stanford) sunk their season.
If Baylor could somehow convince a top-flight defensive coordinator to join Dykes, it could be landing an ideal head coach. He obviously needs help, but his offense should be able to thrive if he decides to head to Waco.