Meet a Candidate: Tim Murphy

Since it has been announce that Syracuse has had contact with Harvard coach Tim Murphy, I thought I’d add him to the list of coaching candidates.

A full rundown of the candidates can be found here.

Tim Murphy

tim-murphy1994-present Harvard (Head Coach: 97-52)
1989-1993 Cincinnati (Head Coach: 17-37-1)
1987-1988 Maine (Head Coach: 15-8)
1985-1986 Maine (Offensive Coordinator)
1982-1984 Boston University (Offensive Line)
1981 Lafayette (Defensive Line)

Who is he?: Murphy is the longtime coach at Harvard , who has compiled a 97-52 record since 1994 with the Crimson. Before taking over at Harvard, Murphy had the head job at Cincinnati. While he only had a record of 17-37-1 while with the Bearcats, that happened after Murphy “inherited a program that had a condemned stadium, no practice facilities, and the loss of 19 scholarships after being placed on probation for infractions incurred by the previous coaching staff.” Murphy’s tenure at Cincinnati ended with an 8-3 record in 1993. Before Cincinnati, Murphy spent two years  as the head coach at Maine,  going 15-8.

What does he bring to the job?: Murphy has extensive head coaching experience. In fact he has the most head coaching experience out of any candidate that has interviewed so far. Murphy has kept Harvard at or near the top of the Ivy League standings year after year.

Murphy’s experience at Cincinnati is also a huge plus, as he was able to turn a horrid program into a respectable one by the time he left. He has experience recruiting the Northeast and wouldn’t need much time to get a staff together and hit the recruiting trail.

Why wouldn’t he be a good fit?: While Murphy has extensive experience, he hasn’t been a D1-A coach since 1993. Who knows if he would be able to make the jump to the Big East. Much like Mark Whipple, Murphy is an experienced coach at the D1-AA level. Unlike Whipple, Murphy has had a shot at a 1A school. But that was 15 years ago. Would he be able to coach and recruit against the other coaches in the Big East?

What are his chances?: Murphy seemingly came out of nowhere to get interviewed, and nobody really had heard of him before. On paper he’s a very talented coach who has great experience. He has experience in the Northeast and would be able to land some good recruits from areas that Syracuse found little success in under Greg Robinson.

Overall he’s an interesting candidate, but not a serious contender. He’d be at the same level as Whipple, which probably puts him 8th or 9th on the list. He could get a job at D1-A at some point, but not with Syracuse.


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