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Bieniemy still a strong candidate as CU head coach search moves into week 2

The former CU star player and assistant coach is coming off Super Bowl run as Chiefs' offensive coordinator.
Credit: AP
Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy walks on the sideline during an NFL football against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018, in Cleveland. The Chiefs won 37-21. (AP Photo/David Richard)

As the University of Colorado football coaching search intensifies this week, Eric Bieniemy remains among the top candidates, sources tell 9News.

The two parties have been in periodic contact, sources tell 9News. There is no deal in place as there are still many questions and decisions to be made on both sides.

9News also confirmed that Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun could also become a candidate. The Boulder Daily Camera reported Calhoun interviewed for CU’s head coaching position this week.

The NFL Network reported the New York Giants’ recently hired outside linebackers coach Bret Bielema would interview for the CU job. Bielema had also been head coach at Wisconsin and Arkansas.

CU interim head coach Darrin Chiaverini, a former Buff receiver and current Buff receivers coach, interviewed for the full-time position on Monday, per a 9News source.

Colorado athletic director Rick George and his top assistant AD Lance Carl are heading the search – as they did a year ago when they seemed to make a shrewd hire by taking a chance on Mel Tucker as a first-time head coach (he was 2-3 as an interim head coach in place of the fired Jack Del Rio for the NFL Jaguars in 2011).

But after one, 5-7 season with the Buffs, Tucker couldn’t resist the lure of riches to both his personal bank account and football budget and left to become head coach of Michigan State.

As long as Bieniemy remains a candidate to replace Tucker, he figures to be the man to beat.

Bieniemy is a former CU running back star who was their most accomplished offensive player in the school’s co-national championship season of 1990. Following a nine-year NFL career, he started his coaching career in 2001 as the Buffs’ running backs coach.

He just completed his 19th coaching season with a Super Bowl LIV title as offensive coordinator of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Bieniemy has interviewed for several NFL head coaching positions in recent years but was bypassed each time. There has been wide speculation Bieniemy would be among the hottest NFL head coaching candidates in 2021.

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