The Indianapolis Colts recently fired offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton mid-season and replace him with Rob Chudzinski, who had been an assistant head coach to Chuck Pagano.
Chudzinski is respected around the league and knows a thing or two about running an offense, and that showed in the Colts' 27-24 upset victory over the Denver Broncos. On a short week during which the Colts made a coordinator change with a struggling offense going up against the NFL's best defense, not much could reasonably have been expected from the Colts. They played their best offensive football of the year, however, doing some of the little things better - like protecting the football. They simplified things, and it paid off.
Chudzinski also has a history of running successful offenses at the University of Miami, however, where he was both a player and a coach (coaching with Chuck Pagano for several years). And with Miami's head coaching job currently open, Chudzinski is in the running to fill the role. According to the Palm Beach Post's Matt Porter, Chudzinski is one of six to ten candidates who are expected to be "seriously considered" for the opening, along with other names such as former coaches Butch Davis and Greg Schiano, as well as Houston head coach Tom Herman, Texas head coach Charlie Strong, and Alabama assistant coach Mario Cristobal.
One of the biggest things in Rob Chudzinski's favor in consideration for the Miami job is surely his extensive history with the program. He was a tight end for the team as a player and was a part of two National Championship teams (1987 and 1989), and later he was a graduate assistant for the team. He became their tight ends coach in 1996 and served in that role for five seasons before being promoted to offensive coordinator for the 2001 season. That year, Chudzinski led the best offense in school history that set records for points, total yards, and rushing touchdowns on their way to winning a National Championship, Chudzinski's third as a member of the program. He served as their offensive coordinator for three years total, from 2001-2003. He developed three first round tight ends (Bubba Franks, Kellen Winslow Jr., and Jeremy Shockey) and led a very successful offense. He is also a member of Miami's Iron Arrow Society, which is a prestigious honor given to people who show tremendous leadership, character, and service to the school.
Since his days at Miami, Chudzinski has been the tight ends coach for the San Diego Chargers (twice), offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns, offensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers, head coach for the Cleveland Browns, assistant head coach for the Colts, and now offensive coordinator for the Colts. He has had a successful coaching career, but his impact on the University of Miami and their football program is especially noteworthy and surely remembered by many fans of the team. That is likely what puts him in serious consideration for the job, as not only has he been a coach at the NFL level, he also was a successful coach and player for the school years ago.