PJ Fleck issues brief statement amid UCLA rumors
PJ Fleck does not sound interested in leaving Minnesota any time soon.
The head coach of the Golden Gophers since 2017, Fleck found his name connected to UCLA with the head coaching position suddenly coming open. Chip Kelly, head coach of the Bruins since 2018, is leaving the program to take the offensive coordinator position under Ryan Day at Ohio State.
Shortly after Kelly’s departure, Fleck was included in one report as a name likely to be near the top of UCLA’s list of candidates. Saturday evening, Fleck addressed that report and rumors with a brief note on social media.
Fleck simply said he is “honored to be the head football coach at Minnesota,” and said the program is ready for an “ELITE” 2024. He even referenced his wedding anniversary trip, apparently taking a brief break from his trip to address the UCLA chatter.
Honored to be the Head Football Coach at Minnesota!! Ready for an ELITE 2024 season!!
— P.J. Fleck (@Coach_Fleck) February 11, 2024
Fleck has produced impressive results as a head coach, though most of his coaching tenure has been in the Midwest. He went 30-22 overall at Western Michigan, including leading the Broncos to a 13-1 record in 2016 after going 1-11 during his first season in 2013.
At Minnesota, Fleck has led the Gophers to a 50-34 record and has gone 5-0 in bowl games. That includes the Quick Lane Bowl this past season despite finishing the regular season at 5-7.
It will be interesting to see where the Bruins turn for a new head coach at this point in the hiring cycle. Things had started to settle down with the NFL’s hiring cycle winding down and the Kalen DeBoer and Jedd Fisch moves taking shape in the college ranks.