CORVALLIS — After visiting Corvallis for the first time last weekend, touring the campus, meeting with coaches and officials and attending Oregon State's 36-33 loss to Colorado at Reser Stadium, Glenn Sugiyama says he is prepared to begin the search for the Beavers' next head football coach.
"It was important for me to be there and see the commitment from the institution, which doesn't exist everywhere," says Sugiyama, managing partner and global sports practice leader for DHR International, the search firm that will help Oregon State identify candidates to be its next coach.
Sugiyama met with OSU athletic director Scott Barnes and spent time talking with baseball coach Pat Casey, men's basketball coach Wayne Tinkle and women's basketball coach Scott Rueck during his time in Corvallis.
"Something I'll be able to relay (to coaching candidates) is (the Beavers') commitment to winning and to excellence," Sugiyama says. "The facilities they've built and what they plan on doing in the future is exceptional. That's going to be a strong selling point for this job.
"I was also impressed with the fan base and support (the football program gets) in and around Corvallis. It's a great opportunity. A coach could in there and build a program and win."
On its website, DHR International identifies itself as one of the largest executive search firms in the world, with more than 50 offices. Sugiyama, who works out of the Chicago office, says DHR operates one of the largest sports practices in the executive search industry.
Sugiyama, in his 14th year with DHR, identified Barnes as a candidate when he was named athletic director at Pittsburgh in 2015. DHR was the search firm used by Purdue last year when it hired Jeff Brohm as football coach and by Stanford when it hired Jim Harbaugh. The company also placed Heather Lyke as Barnes' success at Pitt.
DHR is the search firm used in the hiring for AD and coaching positions for schools such as Colorado State, Fresno State, San Jose State, Kansas and Syracuse.
The company's fees for a candidate, or candidates, for the Oregon State job "shall not exceed $200,000," as per a contract it signed on Monday.
Sugiyama says he will work with a couple of other staffers assigned to the project.
"Oregon State is in good hands," he says.
DHR officials will reach out to representatives of potential coaching candidates to identify their interest in the OSU job.
"We can talk to them as a third party on behalf of our client without (the client) being involved," Sugiyama says.
The company has a research department that vets candidates, and will be armed with a list of criteria aimed specifically at Oregon State.
"We've learned what types of characteristics and traits would be successful there," Sugiyama says. "It's not just about finding a coach who could win games. It's also about a person who fits the culture in the Oregon State community and the city of Corvallis."
Sugiyama says he isn't sure how many candidates he will recommend to Oregon State.
"I let the marketplace dictate the search," he says. "Once we find our person, the search is over."
Barnes says, however, that he, along with school president Ed Ray, will make the final decision on the coaching hire, taking DHR's recommendations into consideration.
"I'll also seek advice from some people on campus and other folks before reaching a decision," Barnes says.
Barnes says there is no time line in which the school will name a new football coach, but hopes a hire will be made as soon as possible after the Nov. 25 Civil War game. The national letter-of-intent signing date has been moved up this year, from the first week in February to Dec. 20.
"We'll want to strike very quickly — literally, as the season ends," Barnes says.