Utah offensive coordinator Norm Chow was negotiating a contract Tuesday to become the next coach at Hawaii, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and the Salt Lake Tribune. Utah will play Georgia Tech in the Sun Bowl.
Chow will coach at Utah, his alma mater, for only one season after being hired in January. The Hawaii-born Chow will get his first chance to be a head coach after 39 years as an assistant at the college and NFL levels. He is credited with the development of three Heisman Trophy winners – Ty Detmer, Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart – and also coached Steve Young, Jim McMahon and Philip Rivers. Tuesday, both Chow and Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said their preference is that he coach the Utes against Tech.
Chow told the Deseret News that he “would be honored to stay” if Whittingham wants him to coach in the Sun Bowl. Utah defensive coordinator Siane Sitake is reportedly a possibility to join Chow in Hawaii. Whittingham said he would likewise hope that Sitake would coach in the bowl game.
As a recruiting dead period began Monday and runs through Jan. 3, Chow would not be able to get on the road to recruit if he were to leave Utah immediately.
Tech wide receivers coach Buzz Preston, a Hawaii grad and former assistant, applied for the position but was not a finalist.