Air Force coach Troy Calhoun recently informed University of Colorado officials he will not be a candidate to be the next head football coach at Colorado, sources close to school's search committee told the Camera.

Calhoun was considered one of the leading candidates for the job because of his excellent reputation in coaching, NFL and college experience and his ties to the state from his time at Air Force and with the Denver Broncos. Colorado athletic director Mike Bohn had acknowledged his appreciation of Calhoun's ability at times over the past year.

With Calhoun out, the only verified candidates known to have interviewed with Bohn and the seven member search committee are former CU coach Bill McCartney, who interviewed last week, former CU players Eric Bieniemy and Jon Embree who interviewed Saturday and interim coach Brian Cabral, who interviewed Monday.

Former Oregon coach and athletic director Mike Bellotti visited Boulder in late October and talked with CU officials after coach Dan Hawkins was fired earlier this month but ultimately decided he wasn't interested in the position.

Bohn and search committee chair Dr. David Clough met with a group of former players last week at a downtown Denver sports bar and indicated there was tremendous interest in the job from coaches around the country, but other names that have been connected with the CU opening have come in the form of speculation.


One of those names -- perhaps the biggest long shot of all -- is LSU coach Les Miles, who coached in Boulder as an assistant in the 1980s under McCartney. Miles' motivation to even consider coming to Colorado would be a desire to remove his family from the fanatical fishbowl in Baton Rouge. He would have to take a steep cut in pay.

It is unclear whether Miles even has interest in the job.

Speculation often runs wild around any high-profile coaching search and that increasingly has been the case in recent days in Boulder. An Internet report citing anonymous sources in Mississippi said coach Houston Nutt was ready to accept the CU job over the weekend. A CU source said that report had no basis in fact.