Dukes focused on right hire, even for shorter tenures

HARRISONBURG, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- More than a week ago, James Madison was forced to enter its third head coaching search since 2013 when Mike Houston left the Dukes for East Carolina.

"For us, its about hiring the right person," JMU director of athletics Jeff Bourne said.

Bourne hass has been through this before. He hired Mickey Matthews in 1999, Everett Withers in 2014 and Mike Houston in 2016. The next hire will be Bourne's fourth hire since the end of the 2013 season.

"If we have to go through this every few years," Bourne added, "we're willing to go through it because its telling us we're doing the right things and this program is in the right place."

Withers made the playoffs in both seasons as JMU head coach, winning the CAA championship in 2015 and earning a national seed in the 2015 FCS playoffs. He left Texas State following that season.

Mike Houston found even more success, winning the FCS national championship in 2016, his first season in Harrisonburg, and making it to the championship game for a second straight season in 2017.

JMU finished 9-4 in 2018 before a loss in the second round of the FCS playoffs.

"For all the negatives that come along with it, I'm willing to do it," Bourne said. "I think its just a matter of finding the individual who can relate to our young people in our program and grow them as young men."

The Minnesota Vikings fired offensive coordinator and former JMU quarterback John DeFillipo Tuesday. He is expected to be considered for the head coaching job.