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Update: Browns will not lose new coach amid wild coaching carousel

Tommy Rees was just hired but that won’t matter if UCLA rumor is true

Syndication: Tuscaloosa News Gary Cosby Jr.-Tuscaloosa News / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Cleveland Browns could be next in line to be impacted by a unique coaching carousel offseason. In a short amount of time, the following events cascaded to create an opportunity for tight ends coach Tommy Rees to get a head coaching job:

  • Boston College HC Jeff Hafley accepted the Green Bay Packers DC job
  • Bill O’Brien, hired by The Ohio State University as OC this offseason, accepted the Boston College head coaching position
  • UCLA HC Chip Kelly accepted the job to replace O’Brien at Ohio State

The final link led to the Rees to UCLA rumor but was also the most shocking of all. Breaking it down simply, a Big 10 head coach left his job to become a Big 10 offensive coordinator.

There are a lot of other details to that but now UCLA is looking for a new head coach.

Enter Rees:

Tommy Rees, 31: An L.A. native, his deep ties to UCLA include father Bill working for 15 years under Terry Donahue and brother Danny playing for the Bruins. After serving as offensive coordinator for three seasons at Notre Dame and one at Alabama, Rees recently took a job as the Cleveland Browns’ tight ends coach and pass game specialist.

Then Bruin Report, behind a paywall, noted that there was traction to the Rees to UCLA connection/rumor:


UCLA has filled their position with former NFL and UCLA RB DeShaun Foster:

With Rees, as with the rest of the wild coaching carousel, it is already interesting that an offensive coordinator for two big-time college programs took a position coach job in the NFL. For a major college program to hire him as their head coach makes more sense given his roles at Alabama and Notre Dame.

The Crimson Tide, as the Browns would be in this case, had a new coach leave shortly after taking a position with them. Ryan Grubb was the Washington Huskies offensive coordinator last year, followed Kallen DeBoer to Alabama then accepted the OC job with the Seattle Seahawks just weeks later.

For now, the rumors are just rumors. On the other hand, O’Brien and Kelly taking their new positions were rumors that lingered for a little while before becoming fact.