CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Carolina Panthers reportedly have a new football coach.
ESPN and NFL Network are reporting that Baylor head coach Matt Rhule will become the lead man on the sidelines for the Panthers.
Rhule, when officially announced as head coach, will be owner David Tepper’s first head coaching hire.
Panthers fired head coach Ron Rivera with four games remaining in the 2019 season. Carolina’s winningest coach posted a record of 76-63-1 with one Super Bowl appearance since he took the helm in 2011.
The Panthers ended this past season with eight straight losses and finished with a 5-11 record.
They will select seventh in April’s NFL Draft.
Rhule coached three seasons at Baylor after leaving Temple.
Baylor went 11-3 this past season, two years after finished 1-11 in Rhule’s first year.
Baylor lost to Georgia, 26-14, in the Allstate Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day.
Rhule has never been a head coach in the NFL, and spent only one year in the league, as an offensive line assistant coach for the New York Giants in 2012.
According to ESPN.com, Rhule was scheduled to meet with the Giants for their head coaching vacancy on Tuesday, but cancelled after his interview with Tepper in Texas on Monday.
The Panthers also interviewed former Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy and Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bienemy. Before deciding on Rhule, Tepper had also planned to meet with New England offensive coordinator Josh McDanels, Panthers interim coach Perry Fewell and Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski.