The wait and speculation are finally over. Mark Mangino is back in coaching.
The former KU boss, who led the Jayhawks to a 12-1 season and Orange Bowl championship in 2007, has been hired by Youngstown State as assistant head coach and tight ends coach. Mangino also will serve as the Penguins' recruiting coordinator.
During the past several months — and, really, the past couple of years — Mangino has been linked to jobs of all kinds all across the country, from a possible answer for head coaching vacancies to a return to Oklahoma as an assistant and all things in between.
It appears Mangino, a YSU graduate, took the Youngstown State job because of his familiarity with the program and the region.
"This is a homecoming for me," Mangino said in the school's official release announcing the hire. "I'm delighted to be at a great school with a great football tradition with a team and coach poised to do great things. Every coaching job I have ever taken was a rebuilding project, but this program is not rebuilding. This program has the potential to have a very good year and that's a credit to Eric Wolford, his staff and his team."
Also in the release, Mangino elaborated about his respect for Wolford, who played for Mangino at Kansas State and coached with him at KSU when Wolford was a graduate assistant working with the offensive line.
"I am a big believer in Coach Wolford's 'no shortcuts' approach that focuses on getting results on and off the field,” he said. “This school is near and dear to my heart and I'll work very hard with Coach Wolford to get the job done."
Mangino resigned from his post at KU following the 2009 season after compiling an eight-year record of 50-48 and earning consensus national coach of the year honors in 2007.
He guided the Jayhawks to one-third of their all-time bowl appearances (four out of 12 in 125 seasons); led KU to bowl games in consecutive years for the first time ever; posted three consecutive bowl victories for first time in school history; had eight-win seasons in consecutive years for the first time since 1908-09; had six wins in four straight seasons for the first time since 1903-06; won 20 games in a two-year period, the most in school history; brought the program into the national polls for the first time in 11 campaigns and saw the passion for KU football explode as the school set home attendance average records in a four-year span.
Prior to his arrival in Lawrence, Mangino played a key role in the rebuilding process at both Oklahoma (1999-2001) and Kansas State (1991-98).