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After Parting Ways With Pagano, Colts Aim To Move Forward

Colts owner Jim Irsay says General Manager Chris Ballard will head up the search for a new head coach

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indianapolis Colts and head coach Chuck Pagano have parted ways. Pagano's tenure in Indianapolis was unique to say the least, having led the Colts to three playoff appearances in six seasons, all while having fought off a bout with leukemia in his first season.

"We'll always cherish the memories and friendships and great victories that we shared together," said Colts owner Jim Irsay of his former head coach. "So much occurred during the 'Chuck Pagano Era', and we couldn't be more thankful for that."

Nevertheless, Irsay says they are moving forward, promising fans the team will taste Super Bowl glory again. This after a season that saw the Colts turn in a less than impressive 4-12 record. In doing so Irsay is turning the search for a new head coach over to his new General Manager Chris Ballard.

"I want someone who has a presence, they gotta be able to lead the room," Ballard said of some requirements he'd like to see in the Colts' next head coach. "If they're aren't an expert on a certain side of the ball, they gotta be able to hire a staff that can teach and grow players."

Ballard adds they will be keeping a lid on who they are looking to talk to and where they are in the process in finding a new coach. However in spite of the fact, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the Colts have requested permission from the New England Patriots to talk with offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. Other coaches around the league, such as Dave Toub and Tom Cable have been floated around as well.

No matter who it is, Ballard makes one thing perfectly clear.

"To me I want somebody who wants to come to the Indianapolis Colts. I don't want them to come here just for Andrew Luck," Ballard continues. "I want somebody who wants to build something special."

Quarterback Andrew Luck is expected to be back and 100-percent healthy for the Colts at the start of next season after spending over a year on the sidelines with a shoulder injury. 

RELATED: Andrew Luck: "I plan on being ready Week 1"

Ballard says he doesn't have a preference in an offensive or defensive minded coach and did not give a time table on when they expect to make their decision.  

(PHOTO: Icon Sportswire/Getty Images)

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