The Jacksonville Jaguars have reportedly hired Jed Hughes of Korn Ferry International to help spearhead their search for a new head coach after meeting with him Wednesday, according to Adam Schefter and Mike DiRocco of ESPN.
Jaguars hired Jed Hughes of Korn Ferry Intl, which conducts executive searches, to assist hiring a head coach, league sources tell ESPN.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 24, 2016
Initially, Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell only mentioned himself, owner Shad Khan, Senior VP of Analytics Tony Khan, and President Mark Lamping as those who would help with the search. Obviously that’s search party has grown.
For those who don’t know, Korn Ferry is an organizational and people advisory firm and the world's largest provider of executive search and Jed Hughes is an incredibly connected man in the sports world. He’s a former coach himself who will take a more corporate route when choosing the next head coach of the Jaguars.
So, what is Dave Caldwell doing all this? Isn’t he supposed to be leading this search?
Well, first, you should be glad he has less autonomy this go around. Do you want Gus Bradley Jr?
Second, Khan has always been about doing things in a new way and I bet he’s far more comfortable with an executive search firm finding his new head coach than how it happened in 2013.
A move to Jed Hughes and Korn Ferry also signals that Khan may have more input in the process, or at least more input in building the framework of how the process unfolds. That tends to happen when you make an important hire at the onset of a new venture and it turns out to be one of the worst hires in your industry’s history at that position.
The Jaguars have already garnered an “overwhelming” response to their head coaching vacancy. Candidates already include former Jaguars and Giants coach Tom Coughlin, former Falcons coach and current Buccaneers defensive coordinator Mike Smith, former Chiefs coach and current Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley, former Broncos coach and current Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, former Rams coach and current Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, and Bills offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn — but that’s sure to grow over the coming days and weeks.
Listen to Hughes talk about the process of hiring a general manager in baseball here. I bet his thoughts translate to front office and coaching searches in other sports.