According to a report Wednesday on the website coachingsearch.com, one of the candidates Kent State athletic director Joel Nielsen has spoken with as a possible replacement for departed football coach Darrell Hazell is Paul Haynes.
A week ago today, an emotional Hazell announced he was leaving KSU after two seasons and having helped the Golden Flashes to its first bowl game in 40 years before taking over as head coach at Purdue.
Although Hazell told Nielsen he would stay on to coach the Flashes in the Jan. 6 GoDaddy.com Bowl in Mobile, Ala., (thereby splitting his time between Ohio and Indiana for a month), Nielsen has been hard at work searching for the school's next head coach.
Like Hazell did, Haynes has strong Ohio State ties and was a coach at Kent State for two seasons in 1999 and 2000.
Last year at this time, Haynes was named the Arkansas defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach after spending the previous seven seasons at Ohio State.
With the Buckeyes, Haynes was the co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach in 2011 after working with the defensive backs from 2005-10. During his time in Columbus, Ohio State compiled a 66-11 record, won six Big Ten titles and played in six consecutive BCS games.
Haynes Kent State ties came first as the Flahes secondary coach in 1999, then as assistant head coach/safeties coach durign the 2000 season.