PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – It appears that the Pitt Panthers will be in need of a new head football coach.

According to a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel report, Paul Chryst is believed to be the guy to replace newly departed Gary Andersen.

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Chryst was offensive coordinator at Wisconsin for 6 years (2006-11) as he helped the Badgers go 60-19 during that time. Chryst was a three-year football letterman as a quarterback at Wisconsin and earned his degree in 1988.

Rumors about Chryst returning to his alma mater surfaced after Oregon State lost its head coach to Nebraska last week. They surprised many by getting Andersen to leave Wisconsin after just two seasons to become the Beavers next head coach.

The school released a statement Friday morning saying the job had not been offered to anyone yet.

Chryst is 19-19 in his third year as the Panthers’ head coach and has one of the youngest teams in the FBS. The Panthers play Houston in the Armed Forces Bowl on Jan. 2.

The move is not yet set in stone and Pitt is expected to make a pitch to Chryst in the hopes that he stays.

According to Chris Peak at Panther-Lair, Chryst is expected to meet with Pitt Chancellor Patrick Gallagher Friday.

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The Fan also spoke with Post-Gazette Panthers beat writer Sam Werner, who weighed in on Chryst’s possible move.

Werner says this was a case of bad luck for Pitt with Chryst having his dream job open.

“This is I think one of the very few if not the only jobs Paul Chryst would leave for,” Werner said. “It’s his alma matter, It’s his hometown. It’s sort of just unlucky for Pitt that Wisconsin is going through the same kind of coaching turmoil and uncertainty that they have over the past few years.”

Werner also told the guys that Pitt did reach out to Pitt to make a last ditch effort to keep him here but it was unlikely they could offer anything that could change his mind.

“I don’t know if there is anything they could do because the allure of Wisconsin isn’t the money or the prestige, it isn’t the facilities or it’s easier to win there, it’s that it’s home for him,” Werner said. “Anyone who has ever lived away from home can tell you that if you get an offer to take a job in your hometown and work at a place you’ve always loved and have been round so much, it’s hard to turn it down and that is why I think this meeting today was more of a formality than anything else.”

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