Dixie State coach on the Utah State vacancy
- LOGAN - Arizona offensive coordinator Mike Canales has not talked to Utah State officials about the Aggies' head coaching job.
At least not yet.
Long rumored to be a likely candidate if the job ever opened, Canales said Tuesday he would "be willing to listen" if Utah State athletic director Randy Spetman wanted to discuss the job with him.
Beyond that, Canales declined comment on the possibility of replacing Mick Dennehy, who was fired by Spetman on Monday, effective at the end of the season.
"The most appropriate thing to do now is not say much," said Canales, a Utah State quarterback from 1980-83. "They're trying to finish their season and we're trying to get ready for USC. . . . I just wish them the best, you know? I'm an Aggie and I'll always be an Aggie."
Air Force offensive coordinator Chuck Petersen took a similar stance.
Asked about the Utah State job, he said, "At this point, it would really be premature to comment on the situation. I'm aware of what happened. . . . But for me personally, it would be premature to comment on my interest or anything like that."
Petersen graduated from the Air Force Academy in 1985. He has been an assistant under Fisher DeBerry for the past 15 years.
Spetman was the athletic director at Air Force for the past eight years, prior to taking the Utah State job last summer.
"The only thing I can [say] is, Randy's a great man and a great leader," Petersen said. "He will bring in the right guy to take that program in the direction it needs to go."
Dixie State College's Greg Croshaw was more outspoken than Canales or Petersen about his interest in coaching the Aggies.
"That would be a dream deal for me," he said. "I would love an opportunity like that, even though it would be hard for me to imagine something like that happening."
Croshaw never has "gone out looking for another job" because he "wanted to raise my family in one spot, which I've done. So the timing would be perfect. But who knows what they're looking for? They'd probably be taking a pretty big risk with a guy like me. . . . Not a lot of junior college guys get a chance like that, and I'm a junior college guy."
Of course, there would be one advantage in hiring a coach from a perennial successful junior college like Dixie.
"If they needed immediate help, I'd probably have a chance to bring some immediate help with me," Croshaw said.
This year, Dixie players are being recruited by the likes of Wisconsin, South Carolina, Michigan State, Oregon and others.
"I'm not saying I'd get all those guys," Croshaw said, "but I think I'd have a pretty good chance to get a number of them. I've worked with those kids. I have a built-in relationship with them."
Notre Dame defensive coordinator Kent Baer, a Cache Valley native who played at Utah State from 1970-72, is another possible candidate for the Aggie job.
He did not return phone calls on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Spetman said he would like to have a new coach in place by Jan. 1. He has not indicated where the search for a new coach will take him.
"I have no criteria written down," he said. "I just want a successful individual who is a motivator."
Whoever replaces Dennehy, Spetman isn't expecting Urban Meyer-like results in his first season or two.
"I'm not going to put that kind of pressure on them," he said. "It's going to take awhile to right the ship."