Sheridan to be named IU’s next OC

Indiana will promote tight ends coach Nick Sheridan to offensive coordinator, a source confirmed Wednesday night.

Sheridan replaces Kalen DeBoer, who spent one year as IU’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach and was recently named the head coach at Fresno State.

IU coach Tom Allen did not rule out an internal candidate upon DeBoer’s exit, saying he wanted someone who would run the same scheme. He has apparently found the caretaker for DeBoer’s offensive system in Sheridan, a former Michigan quarterback who coached the Hoosiers’ signal callers in 2017 and ’18.

Sheridan came to IU after three seasons as a graduate assistant at Tennessee from 2014-16, where he worked under eventual IU o-coordinator Mike DeBord.

By tabbing Sheridan, Allen again is putting trust in a young coach. Last season, 32-year-old assistant Kane Wommack was given the reins of the defense after Allen relinquished those duties. Wommack became the youngest d-coordinator in the Big Ten.

Sheridan will turn 32 in May.

Like Wommack, who is the son of veteran defensive assistant Dave Wommack, Sheridan is also the product of a college football family. Bill Sheridan, Nick’s father, was most recently the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at Boston College.

The difference with Sheridan is a lack of play-calling experience. Wommack was a defensive coordinator at South Alabama and Eastern Illinois before his arrival at IU as linebackers coach in ’18.

Sheridan broke into coaching in 2010 as the quarterbacks coach at his alma mater, Saline High School (Mich.). He shifted to colleges in 2011 and quickly rose up the ranks at Western Kentucky, becoming a quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator. He moved to South Florida for the same role in 2013.

Sheridan showed some versatility as a coach in 2019 when he was moved to the tight ends room. He helped mentor redshirt sophomore Peyton Hendershot, who set new IU single-season records for tight ends with 52 catches for 622 yards.

With the news of Sheridan’s promotion, it is not yet clear whether he will retain tight ends as a position group.

30 comments

  1. I have my doubts about another promotion-from-within that will require on-the-job-training, but maybe it was the best (only?) move considering that the unresolved AD situation may be making other possible hires wary, if not unavailable.

  2. Not what I expected. I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt for now, but I’m not endorsing this. Hopefully he learned a thing or two from DeBoer.

  3. Maybe the football budget is tight the last OC was in the $700,000 + salary range and was the highest paid assistant for I U Football and football attendance wasn’t all that great for the past season and some expenses need to be lowered. Sheridan is making a big jump in coaching responsibilities from his past coaching positions.

  4. Fishspinner I am in the same boat as you. With the talent of the 2020 team coming back I worry about this promotion. IU is at the point a proven OC would make more sense but maybe coach Sheridan will be the world’s greatest OC and make the offense even better, I doubt it but I can hope.

  5. Maybe Nick photocopied Kalen’s playbook? Here’s what’s interesting to me, with the loss of Inge (yeah!) there are 2 less bodies to recruit that are allowed by rule. Then again, recruiting’s not a big part of putting a winning roster together, is it? I have no idea what’s going on here. Maybe TA will pick up a pair of guys at the coaches conference in a few days? I see that our friends up the road off I 65 have the second top 25 class in a row. It’s the second year in row they have had the conference ‘freshman of the year’. I looked at the supposedly ‘easy’ schedule for next year…here’s the early over/under….5.

  6. You promote from within when maintaining continuity and the team’s “culture” a is a priority. And we know, based on how much he emphasizes it, TA places great value on that LOE culture. Problem is, given the talent IU recruits, Coordinators and position coaches need to be great teachers and tactically excellent.

    Sheridan’s annual salary will not be anywhere near $800,000, so maybe TA will spread the difference across some of the other position coaches in order to minimize the risk of them getting poached. Our Running Backs coach deserves a raise.

    As for next season, the only way IU wins eight games is if they get a victory in a bowl game. Starting off against Wisconsin and playing OSU, PSU and Michigan is going to be brutal. Hope Penix is healthy.

  7. WOW!!!! Indiana University football team probably have the two youngest coordinator in the BIG Ten and maybe in the Power 5 conference. Hopefully this will not end up in a disaster. With two very young coordinator, this could really hurt future recruiting. Most recruits have NFL aspiration, there by they are willing to listen to most coordinator that have some type of experience or knowledge. With two young coordinator will be very hard to recruit.

  8. Out of many head-scratching coaching moves, this is TA’s most unexplainable. You just saw how good an OC with PROVEN play-calling experience could make your team, so you choose a guy with no play-calling experience? And you skip over Mike Hart, the best recruiter on your team? Kallen DeBoer honed his craft for many years and proved he was a top-flight talent. Sheridan is an amateur guaranteed to require on the job training. The IU players and fans deserve better.

  9. I’m not sold on this choice either. However, I do know from some of TA’s comments, keeping the system the same was high on the priority list.

  10. Why would KD be invested in that decision? Possibly even negative reasons. Maybe, that’s why Cronk is in transfer portal which leads to recruiting.

    1. Don’t overthink the situation. Coach Allen and DeBoer obviously have a relationship based on trust and respect. Why would TA not ask for his opinion about OC candidates? I damn sure would have. His resume proves he is a very good evaluator of player and coaching talent. Pretty simple.

  11. Pretty simple. Sheridan may be a good candidate, however may have not been the best. K.D. being a good guy? Just not vested in IU program to do what is best at this point. No consequences for KD. If Sheridan is unsuccessful it makes KD look better at his job at IU.

    1. More mud thrown at the wall. Overthinking. That process would make me cancel my next plane reservation.

  12. Not a “home run” OC choice! But the proof of the pudding is in the eating! Good luck Coach Sheridan! Become great! Every Coach has to start somewhere. Coach Allen and staff must recruit, recruit, recruit!

  13. HC. You might want to wipe the mud off your own mirror so you can see yourself more clearly and think straight.

  14. I’ve nothing wrong with overthinking and mud throwing for fun. Just don’t expect me to consider it gospel.

  15. I felt before Gator Bowl KD disqualified himself by becoming Fresno State coach. If Sheridan was the next OC then he should have coached Gator Bowl game.

  16. t,
    I don’t think the new OC decision was set in stone until after the Gator Bowl. If you listen to TA’s press conferences prior to the bowl game it was pretty obvious what he was looking for. He said there was a great deal of interest in the job, but he would also look internally. His biggest concern was that there be no system change. If I remember correctly, he said there had been 3 system changes in his time there and he did not want to go through that again. He wanted more continuity offensive philosophy and the best person he could get to run the current system would get the job.

  17. I’m not concerned about the age of our new OC, but about his experience. He clearly does not have the experience to be a Big Ten OC. So he has no choice but to learn on the job. With his boss having focused on defense most of his career, it’s not like Sheridan is going to enjoy the benefit of being mentored by TA. And now Sheridan is going to be managing position coaches that have a lot more experience than he does. That might not sit well with a couple of them.

    My concern is that we’ll lose Hart. And I think that would be a huge loss! He’s an excellent recruiter and a great RBs coach. I have no idea if Hart even wanted the job, but one must assume he did. Giving Hart a big raise might help, but can IU ever “protect” any of its position coaches if they’re coveted by one of the wealthier Power-five FB programs? We must all hope that TA has his eyes wide open about how the rest of his staff responds to this move. And we must also hope that TA is proactive in doing everything he can, in the way of power sharing and compensation, to minimize the risk that bruised egos will lead to additional turnover. We’ve lost two experienced coaches and I don’t think we can afford to lose any more without causing the program to lose momentum.

    1. With the official announcement for Sheridan as OC it was also announced Hart is now the assistant HC. I don’t know if it is enough to keep him at IU but coach Allen is trying. Sheridan and Heard are co-OCs with Hart the assistant HC. It was also announced Sheridan would go back to coaching QBs so a new TE coach and ST coach is needed.

  18. Stability would = Sheridan OC for Gator Bowl if he had a chance being OC. Let’s see what you got. PO. 1. Where will this lead recruiting 2. Hart has done an excellent job and that is very concerning for IU 3. Did Cronk put his name in transfer portal upon learning about this.
    Brohm and Purdue are controlling, making decisions, recruiting and handling things in a way that makes T.A. and IU look amateurish (kind of like short Lynch time). Just say’n. Several parallels on what may lie ahead.

  19. Purdue, just this week hired a new defensive coach. Maybe Cronk wants to finish out is hometown.

  20. From The Daily Hoosier: “Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports also reported via Twitter that receivers coach Grant Heard was also being promoted to Co-offensive coordinator.”

    As I suspected, TA is going to spread the authority and money around in an attempt to keep his best assistants in Bloomington. My guess is that Hart will also be getting a big raise!

    But wow, IU will have a 32-old DC and a 31-year old OC. I hope they’re both very smart men with a lot of self confidence!

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