LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda is set to be hired as Baylor's next head football coach, according to multiple media reports Thursday.
His emergence as the leading candidate to replace Matt Rhule occurred Thursday morning, on the same day that head coaches Justin Fuente of Virginia Tech and Billy Napier of Louisiana announced they would stay with their current schools after interviewing with Baylor.
Rhule, who left after three seasons at Baylor to become the head coach of the Carolina Panthers, led the Bears in 2019 to an 11-3 season that ended with losses to Oklahoma in the Big 12 championship game and to Georgia in the Sugar Bowl.
Joey McGuire, Baylor's associate head coach and defensive ends coach who is currently the team's interim head coach, was also considered for the position.
Aranda, making $2.5 million a year in his fourth season at LSU as the highest-paid assistant coach in college football, reportedly had a shot at the head coaching job at UNLV, which hired Oregon offensive coordinator Marcus Arroyo in December.
In January 2018, Aranda received a four-year extension worth $10 million guaranteed.
Aranda, 43, also has served as defensive coordinator at Cal Lutheran, Delta State, Southern Utah, Hawaii, Utah State and Wisconsin.
LSU also lost another valuable member of its coaching staff this week as LSU passing game coordinator Joe Brady left to join Rhule as the next offensive coordinator for the Panthers. Brady helped direct the transformation of the Tigers' offense that led to a 15-0 season, a national championship and a Heisman Trophy for Joe Burrow.
Aranda previously coached college football in Texas as a graduate assistant at Texas Tech (1999-2001) before becoming Houston's linebackers coach (2002-03).
--Field Level Media