Dan Wolken, USA TODAY
Published 4:30 p.m. ET Feb. 22, 2020 | Updated 5:04 p.m. ET Feb. 22, 2020
USA TODAY Sports’ Michael Middlehurst Schwartz breaks down the top prospects heading into the NFL draft combine.
Colorado is working toward a deal with Miami Dolphins assistant head coach Karl Dorrell to become the next head coach of the Buffaloes, a person with knowledge of the situation told USA TODAY Sports. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on behalf of the school, which had not yet announced the hire.
Dorrell has been a head coach in the Pac-12 before, going 35-27 over five seasons at UCLA before getting fired. During that time, Dorrell had one standout 10-2 year in 2005 but largely had an underwhelming tenure with the Bruins, finishing fourth or fifth in the conference in all but one season.
Dorrell is familiar with Colorado, with two stints in Boulder earlier in his career — 1992-93 as receivers coach and 1995-98 as offensive coordinator.
Colorado had pursued a handful of coaches in the wake of Mel Tucker’s departure after one season to Michigan State, with athletics director Rick George prioritizing college head coaching experience.
Colorado seemed locked in on Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian earlier this week. Sarkisian, however, decided to remain at Alabama, sending the search into new directions, with Dorrell emerging as the favorite on Saturday.
Dorrell is unlikely to be a popular hire among fans, given that he’s been largely out of the limelight since UCLA. The 56-year-old has had two stints with the Dolphins, one with the New York Jets and one with the Houston Texans since returning to the NFL. He also was Vanderbilt’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2014.