With three head coaching jobs in the Pac-12 up for grabs, many names are bound to be thrown around before Arizona State, UCLA and Washington State finally make their decisions. Right now, there's a lot of smoke around Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz, who according to a report by NFL.com's Jason La Canfora, has strong interest in both the Arizona State and UCLA jobs. This is in addition to an earlier report by the Chicago Tribune that also stated Martz's alleged interest in coaching the Sun Devils.
Though Martz's identity seems so tied to the NFL thanks to his Greatest Show on Turf days in St. Louis, he actually has extensive experience in the college game. Martz coached at Arizona State for nine seasons (1983-1984, 1986-1991), where he served as wide receivers coach, quarterbacks coach and eventually offensive coordinator before jumping to the Rams, who were still in Los Angeles at the time.
If Martz were to interview, or if he was hired, for either job, it would create an interesting situation for a Bears team fighting for a playoff birth down the stretch. With both college and high school football seasons just about over, recruiting is about to reach its most feverish period as signing day approaches in February, so both UCLA and Arizona State figure to move quickly with their searches. It's highly likely that both will make a hire before the NFL season ends, and both would also likely want their head coach out on the recruiting trail immediately. Whether or not that will effect Martz's interest in those schools or those schools interest in Martz remains to be seen, but it's something to keep in mind as this story develops.