Well the time has come to take a look at some possible replacements for the departing Schellas Hyndman.
To be clear I don't know if any of these people have, or will be, considered for the FC Dallas job. They just seem the most logical......with a few thrown in for fun.
(Editor's note: We'll probably continue to have more names to add to this list as we go on, but this is a great start.)
The Positives: The man has been around since the days of Colin Clarke and the Dallas Burn. The Hunt's cherish loyalty and there probably isn't a person involved with this team that has shown more of it. Over nine years and three head coaches Ferruzzi has been there on the sidelines.
The Unanswered Questions: Other than a short stint as the interim head coach when Steve Morrow was shown the door and coaching the Reserve Team, to varying success, Ferruzzi is unproven as a head coach. I can hear you all screaming at your computer screens right now and I know that Jason Kreis (who I'll get to shortly) was also unproven. Regardless, it's still a gamble going with a guy who doesn't have head coach experience and the Hunts aren't known for making gambles.
The Down Side: Even though Ferruzzi has been here longer than Hyndman, I wonder if all those years under his tutelage could mark him as a "Schellas guy" and in the end work against him.
The Positives: Bliss has a long resume between playing, being a coach which now includes two interim coaching jobs in MLS, Technical Director for the Columbus Crew, and also as State Director of Coaching for Kansas Youth Soccer. The Hunts have known him from his days as an assistant and interim coach for the Kansas City Wizards and of course his time with the Crew. Loyalty is another big selling point for the Hunts here, not to mention the nice job he has done since taking over the coaching spot at Columbus.
The Unanswered Questions: Again he doesn't have a ton of experience coaching at the MLS level. That said, he has extensive experience coaching at not only other levels, but at many, many jobs across MLS. He certainly wouldn't be the sexy, flashy hire that many are hoping for.
The Down Side: This story from MLSSoccer.com's Andrew King.
Bliss told media at training that he, owner Anthony Precourt and general manager Mark McCullers had had "private conversations," and that outcomes have been discussed ranging from Bliss keeping both the head coaching job and technical director position to having neither position at the end of 2013.
"All of those things were approached and I've told them before that I enjoy working at the club, and want to be here, regardless of the decision they make on the coaching side," he said. "I still think I've got a lot to offer on the technical director side, so if they go with somebody else, I told them I still wanted to stay on. But that's going to be their choice moving forward."
It doesn't appear that Bliss has any desire to leave his current club in Columbus. Whether the new ownership group feels the same could be an entirely different thing.
The Positives: We all know he's been licking his chops for this job for a long time. He would be the quintessential Hunt family hire. He's ingrained here, he's (mostly) stayed out of the Schellas shadow during the rough times, and he's coached everything from MLS, to Futsal, to National teams. Plus, there may be no one better who knows the ins and outs of the current roster.
The Unanswered Questions: While Clavijo certainly has experience coaching in MLS, one thing he hasn't had is much success. Save for one finals appearance in the US Open Cup in 2001 with the New England Revolution, he has not had a good record as a coach. With the Rapids, his last head coaching position, he was 43-55-26. Regardless of how much he knows the players on this team, can he actually do anything with them?
The Bad: While the casual fan won't care a bit, the hardcore fans are going to hate this pick if he ends up getting the job. I don't think that many have a problem with him staying as the Technical Director at FCD but Head Coach is another thing all together. I think the fans want to see new blood not tainted by the stench of the past few years and I don't think Clavijo is that man.
The Positives: This is the sexy pick that many fans would like to see become the new coach for the Hoops. If you ask the fans who they want, Eric Wynalda is easily a top three pick if not number one in many circles. His success in the 2012 US Open Cup with Cal FC, whose win against the Portland Timbers made them the first USASA side to beat an MLS side, catapulted his stock and many have been wondering since then when Wynalda will get his shot at an MLS coaching gig. He also would certainly bring media attention to FC Dallas should he become the skipper.
The Unanswered Questions: As with many of the others we will look at here, he doesn't have any MLS coaching experience. I'm told he turned down the Chicago Fire job in the past and he also interviewed for the Chivas USA gig (but really who the hell would want that?). Can his success as a USMNT player, amateur coach, and fire brand TV analyst transfer to being in charge of an MLS team?
The Bad: The biggest issue I see with Wynalda is can his personality and coaching style mesh well with the Hunts. The Hunts aren't known picking leaders who could possibly rock the boat. Many though would argue that Wynalda's fire is exactly what this club could use.
The Positives: Will Dallas' all time leading goalscorer come home? What could possibly be bad about the Prodigal Son returning to where it all started? He hasn't signed a new contract with RSL in the offseason and will, presumably, be looking at all offers. The return of JK9 to Dallas would be amazing and I can't think of too many people that would have an issue with him taking the reigns.
The Unanswered Questions: It has been reported by SI.com that NYCFC have targeted Kreis to be their first head coach and become the face of a new franchise. It would be tough for FC Dallas to match any type of offer that a Manchester City/New York Yankees backed team can offer him.
The Bad: Let's be honest here folks, there isn't much chance of this ever happening. Even forgetting the NYCFC offer, Kreis didn't leave here as a player without some bad feelings. Has that scar healed over or does it still leave a bad taste in JK9s mouth? I just don't see FCD putting up the money to convince Kreis to look away from bright lights of New York or the comfortable life he has in Utah.
The Positives: While not the flashiest choice out there the one time Impact coach isn't doing much these days. Marsch led the Montreal Impact to the best record for an MLS franchise in their opening season in 2012 but was oddly let go at the end of last season. For those looking for a guy with no attachments to the Hunts, he's about as clean as it gets. He spent 14 years playing in MLS, spent several years playing under Bob Bradley in both college and the pros, and even spent a year as an Assistant Coach for the USMNT.
The Unanswered Questions: While his inaugural season with Montreal was a success when compared to other expansion team's first years, it wasn't that pretty at times. The biggest question is did we see enough of Marsch to warrant giving him a run out at FCD?
The Bad: He has no connection with the Hunts. I know I listed that in the positives above but, while I think the fans see this as a positive, the Hunts are notorious for bringing in "their guy", who ever that may be, and Jesse Marsch would be a shocking pick in the end.
The Positives: The US Soccer Hall of Fame member, and first player signed by MLS, has been the coach of the USMNT U-20 squad for a couple of years now and seems ripe and ready for a head coaching gig in MLS. What an exciting hire this guy would be.
The Unanswered Questions: He has zero experience in MLS as a head coach. However with the success that Caleb Porter has had with Portland this year teams may be more willing to take a chance on a guy like Ramos, whose coaching experience comes from national team soccer.
The Bad: Could the Hunts actually convince him to leave US Soccer for a job in MLS? He doesn't seem the type of hire the Hunts would make. What a thrill it would be to see him here though.
The Positives: Sarachan may not be a name familiar to many but his pedigree is outstanding. During his first season as the head coach of the Chicago Fire Sarachan won the Supporter's Shield, US Open Cup, MLS Coach of the Year, and took the Fire to the MLS Cup finals. He has a long history of coaching and a long time attachment to Bruce Arena with DC United, the USMNT, and now as Arena's assistant in LA. Back in 2008, when FC Dallas was searching for a new manager, Sarachan was on their shortlist with Hyndman.
The Unanswered Questions: Not many at all. With Sarachan you know what you're getting and, on top of his years with the Fire, he has had many years of tutelage from Bruce Arena which can't be a bad thing.
The Bad: At 59 years of age Sarachan is not a young man. Not that his age is necessarily a bad thing, he wouldn't be, at least on the surface, an exciting pick to many FCD fans. That said his age and experience should give the Hunts reason to give Sarachan at least a passing though in their search for the new head coach in Frisco.
The Positives: Outside of maybe Jason Kreis there is no former player that most FCD fans would love to see at the helm than Papi. Pareja is still so loved around these parts and what he's been doing in Colorado has forced his name into the Coach of the Year debate for this season. Pareja is a player's coach and it's hard to find anyone who's played with/against/for him that has a bad thing to say about the man. Not to mention how much the fans in Colorado have fallen in love with him.
The Unanswered Questions: None. His talent and personality are well known here in FCD-land. His seven years as a player and five years as an assistant at FC Dallas, including the 2010 season, will always be remembered fondly and he left Frisco in time to ensure that none of the stench of the last couple of years is hanging around on him.
The Bad: I just don't see a way that he leaves Colorado. He has really begun to build a nice young team there that looks set to be solid for years to come. With the love of the fans, players and seemingly the front office in Commerce City I really don't think he's going anywhere. In fact, if anything, the job opening at FC Dallas could potentially lead to Colorado giving him a fat pay raise this offseason. Especially if the Pids end up in the playoffs.
The Positives: Yeah I don't even think I need to say anything here do I? Just too many to count.
The Unanswered Questions: The only unanswered question about Bob Bradley is if he would want to return to coaching in MLS right now. He has made it clear in the past that he wants to coach in a large European league or an international team and with the success and high profile he's gained with Egypt he's certainly earned a shot.
The Bad: Never going to happen. Not unless the Hunts offer him ridiculous money, which they aren't going to do. Bradley has recently been linked with the vacant coaching job for the Australian National Team and after living in Egypt for several years now I'm sure Australia must seem like a paradise.
Okay so I'm not really being serious here but how awesome would it be see see Leonel Alvarez back in Dallas screaming at the top of his lungs. And don't forget that hair. That sweet sweet long curly hair.
Who do you guys want to see at the helm of the FC Dallas ship going forward?