Dykes reportedly has offers of more than $4 million per year from both schools, and TCU has indicated they would like to make his hire official this weekend.
If Dykes makes the leap from Dallas to Fort Worth, he will join a Horned Frog team that is 5-6 on the season and lost 42-34 against SMU in September. He would replace Gary Patterson, who was fired in the middle of the season after 21 years in charge.
At SMU, Dykes has compiled a 30-17 career record over four years. Following a 5-7 record in year one, Dykes has gone 25-10 over the last three years, including 8-3 this season.
Dykes began working at SMU after spending the 2017 year at TCU as an offensive analyst for coach Patterson. Before his year in Fort Worth, Dykes held head coaching duties at Louisiana Tech University (2010-12) and the University of California (2013-16).
Making a move to TCU makes sense for Dykes to lead a team that is part of a more challenging power five conference.
To date, four Big 12 teams have made the playoffs while no AAC team has finished the season in one of the top four spots in the seven years that the league has implemented playoffs.
This year, the AAC’s Cincinnati Bearcats have an excellent chance to become the first conference team to make the playoffs. The Bearcats are undefeated and ranked fourth in the nation with only two games left to play. However, what may sway Dykes further is that Cincinnati will leave the AAC and join the Big 12 no later than July 1st, 2024, and possibly earlier.
UCF and Houston will join Cincinnati as AAC teams that will join the Big 12 in the move that weakens the AAC while simultaneously strengthening the Big 12.
TCU has also made it a priority to target a coach who can successfully manage the transfer portal. Few head coaches in the nation have done as well as Dykes has with transfers in his SMU tenure. SMU quarterback Tanner Mordecai and tight-end Grant Calcaterra transferred from Oklahoma and have been key contributors this season.
TCU would also like a coach who has proven to be able to recruit Texas players. Dykes has proven he can, as all high school players the Mustangs signed in the 2021 recruiting class were from the state of Texas.