After perhaps the dumbest 18 hours in coaching search history outside the state of Tennessee, it appears Texas A&M has hired a new head coach. Seriously this time. After a few hours last night when we all thought it was Kentucky’s Mark Stoops, it appears it’s another former Jimbo Fisher defensive coordinator overachieving at a basketball school out east: Duke’s Mike Elko.
After a wild 24 hours, Texas A&M set to hire Mike Elko as next head coach. Decision on A&M's side was made late last night, with conversations with Elko taking place throughout Sunday.— Billy Liucci (@billyliucci) November 26, 2023
Elko, who ran the defense in Jimbo Fisher’s first four seasons in Aggieland, returns to College Station after going 16-8 in two years in Durham, NC. While there were a slew of other names that were thrown out there as a part of this search, Elko always seemed to be one of the frontrunners. His unique combination of Power 5 head coaching experience as well has his time spent at A&M made him uniquely positioned to succeed here perhaps more than anywhere else. He also has a chance to keep the current roster together moreso than an other external hire would.
Now the next step will be Elko building his staff. It’s unclear how many current A&M assistants he will retain and how many Duke staffers he’ll bring with him, though a no-brainer seems to be to try and keep Elijah Robinson on the staff (who served as the Aggies’ interim head coach for the past two games.
With the drama behind us, it’s exciting to welcome Coach Elko back with open arms.