The Owls would be wise to do all they can to keep Brian Bohannon

The Kennesaw State Football program has never been an average startup program and the majority of its success is largely due to the work of one man.

The No. 21 Owls (9-1, 4-0 Big South) will play No. 22 Momouth in a de facto conference championship game at Fifth Third Bank Stadium. In just three brief seasons of live play, Brian Bohannon has taken KSU from literally nothing to a national contender.

Since taking the job as first-ever head coach of the Owls in the summer of 2013, Bohannon has never had a losing season and has been nationally ranked multiple times. His latest recruiting class was ranked by one outlet as the 10th best in the nation in the Football Championship Subdivision.

2017 Kennesaw State Football Signing Day — Full Video

Kennesaw State football head coach Brian Bohannon announced the Owls’ 2017 incoming class Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017 on National Signing Day. Sixteen future Owls were introduced, including three mid-year transfers that joined the program in January. Full Recap: Subscribe NOW to Kennesaw State Athletics: | The official YouTube channel for the Kennesaw State Owls features interviews, press conferences, highlights and much more!


Most of the time, a successful football program is far from a problem, but when an FCS school’s team impresses too much on the field, so called “greener pastures” often come-a-callin’. Football programs with more money, flashier facilities and larger exposure are forever in need of the next big hire to replace the coach they just fired or who left them high and dry.

It’s getting awfully hard to keep Brian Bohannon’s upside a secret and his name was one of the first to be batted around when the Georgia Southern job came open mid-season. It may be the first serious discussion of a more established program having interest in the father of Kennesaw State Football, but it certainly won’t be the last.

Coach Brian Bohannon coaches his Kennesaw State Owls from the sidelines at Fifth Third Bank Stadium. (Blake Silvers/RCR)

An opening at Georgia Southern, or any option offense loving institution, should make Owls fans uneasy. A product of the Paul Johnson coaching tree, Bohannon has shown that he not only has a grasp on the triple option, but he has been an incredible CEO over KSU’s program.

Paul Johnson, now at Georgia Tech, won a pair of national titles at Georgia Southern in 1999 and 2000 and did so with Brian Bohannon on staff. Another Johnson protégé, Jeff Monken, had some success in Statesboro also, but left for Army after four seasons. Since then, the Eagles have had their share of ups and downs, and are noticeably hungry for a return of the good ole days.

Unfortunately for KSU fans and athletic administrators, Bohannon would be a perfect fit for a return to Statesboro. The question is whether he’s ready to give up his baby in Cobb County for a little more cash and an FBS schedule.

Bohannon shrugged off any questions about the opening at Georgia Southern when asked this week, but didn’t go so far as a denial.

Brandon Hebert on Twitter

There isn’t a more natural fit in college football than Brian Bohannon going to Georgia Southern this off season IMO. Much to the dismay of all my KSU friends.

When he took the KSU job, Bohannon made it seem as if he’d found a long-term home in Cobb County. “It’s been 16 years since I had a job interview,” he said in his initial press conference when first hired. ” I don’t interview for a job unless I want it. I want to be here for the long haul.”

Vaughn Williams, who hired Bohannon in 2013, left Kennesaw for Boston College over the summer, and KSU’s new director of athletics is Milton Overton. He was named to the position on Halloween, but has a good opportunity to make a big splash early on by doing all he can to keep a good thing going.

Bohannon’s 2013 contract has him scheduled for a $5,000 raise in 2018, bringing his total yearly salary up to $260,000 for the year. Currently schedule to top out at $275,000 through the 2020 season, while Tyson Summers made $530,000 plus bonuses before being fired at Georgia Southern. Money isn’t everything, but it’s something and even a nominal increase in pay for Brian Bohannon and his staff could go a long way to keeping him at KSU.

[Related Story: Kennesaw State proves its not just any ‘startup’ program]

It’s a good time for Kennesaw State Athletics to step up and do everything within their power to keep Brian Bohannon on board, maintaining the stability and success KSU’s young football program has seen to this point.

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Blake Silvers is an editor at the Rome News-Tribune, and a contributor at Fansided. His work frequently appears on, and he has also written for Bleacher Report in the past.