Friday, November 30, 2012

All the coach-hiring muck that's fit to rake

Because it wouldn't be late November/early December without rumors of debatable veracity regarding every job opening everywhere.

Tennessee: Jon Gruden either is or isn't going to Tennessee, depending whom you believe (by which I mean he isn't). This was published by the seemingly credible Chattanooga Times Free Press late Thursday night:
The Chattanooga Times Free Press has learned from sources close to the process that Super Bowl-winning coach Jon Gruden has been extended an offer to succeed Derek Dooley.

Sources confirmed that while details are still being negotiated, the university's offer is very lucrative and there is no firm deadline on a decision.

Gruden's decision likely will hinge on the money the school is willing to pay for his potential staff, the sources say.

"Right now, the money is there for him, but they aren't as close as he would like for his assistants," one source said. "It could happen as soon as this weekend or go into next week, but he's pretty firm where he is and has already spoken with the guys he wants to be on the staff with him."
OMG GRUDEN. And this was published by ESPN on Friday:
Tennessee's search for a new football coach is not focused on Jon Gruden, multiple sources close to the school's search process told on Friday.

There were discussions among the two sides late last week, but Gruden informed Tennessee officials after meeting with his family that it was a move he didn't want to make at this time, according to sources.

"Coach Gruden has let us know that he's not interested, and we're pursuing other candidates," a Tennessee official said.
Oh. Meanwhile, Spencer/Orson at EDSBS is MS Paint-ing furiously.

Colorado: Mark Mangino definitely interviewed at Colorado but definitely won't be going there:

That seems fairly explicit. Anyway, To my knowledge, Utah State coach Gary Anderson is the only other publicly known candidate; I assume he's now the frontrunner if he wasn't already. The Daily Camera in Boulder also reports the following guys as being of interest: Fresno State coach Tim DeRuyter, BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall and San Jose head coach Mike MacIntyre.

Auburn: Charlie Strong either interviewed or didn't interview with Auburn, depending whom you believe:
Auburn interviewed Louisville coach Charlie Strong this week to fill its head coach vacancy, according to a report by, though Strong later denied interviewing for the job.

The interview with a representative of the Auburn search committee took place in the past two days, reported, citing someone familiar with the process.
So Charlie Strong did not interview, according to Charlie Strong. Logical thinking leads me to conclude that there was unofficial contact that was an interview according to some people and not an interview according to Charlie Strong. Semantics.

Regardless, Strong might not even be a real candidate:
Auburn's search for a new football coach may be focused on three former assistants at the school: former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino, Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher and Arkansas State coach Gus Malzahn. Also, TCU coach Gary Patterson remains a player in the search.

Petrino's interest in Auburn is high, and Fisher and Malzahn would listen to Auburn, according to people familiar with the situation. Petrino has not been contacted for an interview. The Auburn search committee, or people acting in its behalf, are calling people in athletics about Petrino, who was fired at Arkansas last April after admitting having an affair with a university employee.

Auburn is also taking a hard look at Patterson, who it interviewed in 2008 before hiring Gene Chizik. Though not addressing Auburn specifically, Patterson said Tuesday, "When someone calls, you should always listen, because it's the right thing to do."
I have no idea why people think Jimbo Fisher is leaving Florida State for a lesser and infinitely-harder-to-win-at program. Petrino and Malzahn could probably be had, though, and Patterson might be more gettable than initially believed based on that quote.

And then there's this, which is from EDSBS but does include actual newsy info:
The focus at Auburn is reportedly on Petrino, but the dark horse name in the search remains Jim Mora, a favorite of some boosters and someone with everything Auburn is reportedly looking for: NFL experience, an actual college head coaching tenure now, and the ability to develop NFL talent.
O RLY. Whether Mora's actually interested is an entirely different matter; he's not making a ton of money by SEC standards but could probably get it from UCLA, which undoubtedly has little interest in losing the guy everybody there is convinced is New Pete Carroll.

Arkansas: So Les Miles is out. reported that Gary Patterson was at one point the leading candidate; everything else out there is just weird stuff like this ...
A source informed me that multiple people close to Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian believe that Sark is definitely in the mix.

Sarkisian, 38, just finished his fourth year in Seattle.
... followed by this ...
Sources tell me that Steve Sarkisian will NOT be the next head coach at Arkansas.
... and that totally believable story from the beginning of the week that Chris Petersen had already agreed to take the job and would be announced as the new coach by Tuesday (the one three days ago):
Boise State coach Chris Petersen is poised to become the new coach at Arkansas, and athletics director Jeff Long is supposed to have a final answer Tuesday, but all indications are good, according to multiple sources.

Terms of the deal were not known Monday night.
Possible? I guess; it's not totally unreasonable to think Petersen might eventually be interested in going elsewhere for a billion dollars a year, and gettability does not seem to be one of Jeff Long's criteria. Plausible? Not so much.

NC State: There's something resembling clarity here thanks to actual information:
NC State officials, led by athletic director Debbie Yow, interviewed Louisiana Tech head coach Sonny Dykes and Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris earlier this week, according to published reports ... (but) Round 2 isn't expected to begin until after this weekend's conference championship games.

The reason for the break, say the sources, is because at least "two or three'' potential candidates will be coaching in those games. Those candidates include Northern Illinois head coach Dave Doeren and Kent State head coach Darrell Hazell.

"She wants to be thorough, so she wants to talk to more people,'' one source said. "But I think she has a choice in mind.''

Another source said that choice is Dykes.
Plausibility: high. It's actually kinda interesting that they're even bothering to wait for the MAC guys since Dykes is reportedly a candidate everywhere.

Boston College: There's far less to go on here. Basically all that's known is that Saints O-coordinator and B.C. alum Pete Carmichael Jr. is a candidate ...
Saints OC Pete Carmichael Jr., a BC graduate, is on radar of BC athletic dept. as a potential HC, per source.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 27, 2012
 ... as is a slightly lesser-known candidate:
Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio reported on Wednesday night that Saints offensive line coach/running game coordinator Aaron Kromer will interview for the position after New Orleans' Thursday night game against Atlanta.
FYI, Kromer was an assistant at Miami (Ohio) and Northwestern in the '90s; that's about the extent of his college experience. It seems unlikely that the Saints coaching staff comprises the entirety of Boston College's coaching pool, though -- Bruce Feldman has implied that 49ers O-coordinator (and former Stanford O-coordinator) Greg Roman is of interest -- so I'm guessing the lack of other names is just a combination of Brad Bates keeping things on the down low and Boston College being Boston College.

Purdue: Hammer and Rails has things pretty well covered on this front. The new-ish news:
Purdue will meet with Cincinnati's Butch Jones regarding their football coach position, according to Football Scoop. Earlier, Brandan Murphy of Boiler Radio reported Jones has been offered the job, but no other outlet is currently reporting the same thing.
It seems doubtful that Jones already has an offer given that he probably hasn't even officially interviewed since Cincinnati is still playing; that said, it wouldn't be a surprise if he were at or near the top of Purdue's list. A potentially confirming tweet from Indy radio host Jake Query:
#Purdue front runners: Butch Jones and Sonny Dykes in dead-heat.
See above. And then there's this from Tom Dienhart, which ... uhh ...
A name to watch for #Purdue job is Jim Caldwell. Fits Purdue's criteria on many levels. And remember: Bill Polian is "advising" Purdue.
... hmmm. Caldwell went 23-60 in eight years at Wake Forest in the mid-to-late '90s, was fortunate enough to be employed by the Colts Peyton Manning for a couple years before running the Colts into the ground and is now a quarterbacks coach for the Ravens. He's also about to turn 58. He'd really make no sense whatsoever except for his mustache, which is extant and thus makes him a viable candidate at Purdue.


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