The past few weeks have been an absolute roller coaster for Tennessee’s administration in trying to obtain a new Head Football Coach. Is the search close to being over?
Tennessee Coaching Circus
As far as the public eye knows,Tennessee has made offers to four different coaches in the past week, with one accepting and the other three declining.
Yes, only Tennessee can have a coach accept and lose an offer within the same day. Other coaches have also declined interest in coaching the Vols before they could even be offered the job. Let’s take a look at who Tennessee has targeted and the story behind each of them.
On Sunday afternoon, it had appeared Tennessee’s coaching search was over.
A great source has told me Tennessee is hiring Greg Schiano, the former head coach at Rutgers now defensive coordinator at Ohio State. He did well at Rutgers but failed at Tampa Bay. Has done well as Ohio State DC. UT turned to Schiano when Dan Mullen took Florida job.
— Jimmy Hyams (@JimmyHyams) November 26, 2017
Little did they know, it was just getting started. The hiring of Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano ignited an absolute uproar on social media from Vol fans as well as larger public figures.
Greg Schiano is a disaster of a hire for Tennessee. John Currie should resign if that’s his actual decision. Guy may have covered up child rape at Penn State. I would 1 billion % rather have Lane Kiffin back. Leach would also be better. So would Bobby Petrino. Just awful.
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) November 26, 2017
Tweets from Vol fans soared from every angle shooting down the Schiano fire. As crazy as it may sound, it seems the backlash from the fans worked as Schiano and Tennessee would part ways later in the day.
Greg Schiano is currently concerned with the climate of the Tennessee fan base and the reaction towards reports of his contract being finalized at Tennessee. The deal may not get finalized.
— Dan Harralson (@danharralson) November 26, 2017
Who could blame Schiano though?
There are not many coaches or people in general who want to be somewhere they are not wanted. The day that was coined as the “Rocky Top Revolution” would soon spark a #FireCurrie movement that was chanted at a WWE event in Knoxville Monday night, as well as during a basketball game during the week.
Some may find the turn of events with Schiano caused by the fans comical and some may see it as embarrassing to the University and its football program. One thing is for sure; no coach has ever agreed to a deal and been canned soon after a social media revolt by fans.
Next, Tennessee would focus their sights on Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy. This time, Vol fans seemed to agree with bringing Gundy on board, so it should work, right? Wrong.
Sources: Mike Gundy has decided to remain at Oklahoma State. He met w/Tennessee officials Tuesday in Dallas. Gundy reportedly had a 6-year, $42 million deal from Tennessee, but will remain at his alma mater https://t.co/m1igbKIEpx
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) November 29, 2017
Gundy has seen plenty of success at Oklahoma State, going 113-53 in thirteen years as their coach. Apparently, big names such as the likes of Peyton Manning were involved in trying to recruit Gundy.
Sources: Among the conversations b/w Tennessee & Mike Gundy before today included a call from Peyton Manning making a pitch for Gundy to come to UT
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) November 28, 2017
However, Manning’s call nor the seven million dollars a year Tennessee reportedly offered him would be enough to bring the mullet to Knoxville.
Just when you did not think this coaching search could get any more bizarre, it did just that.
After the Gundy pursuit ended, Tennessee quickly transitioned to Purdue Head Coach Jeff Brohm. Once again, it appeared Currie has his man as a historically credible source to the University of Tennessee, Jimmy Hyams, tweeted Tennessee had reached an agreement with Brohm to become Head Coach of the Vols and that he would be announced Wednesday afternoon.
Consequently, the tweet was deleted soon after speculation arose if Tennessee had even been in contact with Brohm about the job.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) November 29, 2017
It was difficult to know who to believe while the Brohm rumors were swirling as pictures even surfaced of Brohm recruiting for the Boilermakers during the same day, evidently.
Purdue University football coach Jeff Brohm was at Christian County High School today to visit 2018 commit Cory Trice. According to Trice, Brohm said he’s not leaving the Boilermakers for Tennessee. https://t.co/TKmPnJIn9L
— Chris Jung (@ChrisJungKNE) November 29, 2017
Clay Travis had an interesting take on what happened with Brohm according to his “sources”.
I am told that UT AD John Currie made an offer to Jeff Brohm that Brohm accepted. Currie then asked the chancellor to approve the offer — buyout included — and chancellor said no. So Currie went back to Brohm with lesser offer and Brohm said no. So here we are.
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) November 29, 2017
It is easy to see there were more than enough viewpoints on what was happening between the Tennessee administration and Brohm on Wednesday to give anyone a headache. All in all, it was another wild and unsuccessful day for Vol fans waiting on a new Head Coach.
On Thursday, John Currie would set the search on NC State Head Coach Dave Doeren. This would not take long at all as Currie offered Doeren the job, and Doeren synonymously declined.
ICYMI — BREAKING NEWS: NC State coach Dave Doeren has turned
down Tennessee. The Vols made an offer but NC State countered at $3 million a year for 5 years. So where does UT turn? Chad Morris?
Kevin Steele? Jeremy Pruitt? Lane Kiffin? Tee Martin?
— Jimmy Hyams (@JimmyHyams) November 30, 2017
With many coaches being rumored throughout the past week as targets or potential hires, it is easy to become confused. Here is an organized tweet of who has either expressed their lack of interest in the job or who has actually declined the job.
TENNESSEE COACHING SEARCH UPDATE:
Jon Gruden – No
Scott Frost — No
You — No
Dan Mullen – No
Greg Schiano – Yes, then blocked
Mike Gundy – No
David Cutcliffe – No
Jeff Brohm – No
Jim Bob Cooter – No
Lane Kiffin – "Never said I wanted to. Ha"
Dave Doeren – Sounds a lot like No
— John Martin (@JohnMartin929) November 29, 2017
Notable names who expressed their disinterest in the Tennessee job include Chip Kelly (UCLA), Dan Mullen (Florida), David Cutcliffe (Duke), and Jim Bob Cooter (Detroit Lions).
With the coaching search being this frantic and unorganized in such a short span of time, it can make one wonder, does anyone want this job? Whatever the case may be, Tennessee needs to find a high-quality coach, and they need to find one now as the options and credibility of this job is shrinking each day this cycle goes on.
The latest rumor is Tennessee is talking heavily with Washington State Head Coach Mike Leach.
Sources tell @NBCDFWSports that former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is working on a deal to become the next coach at Tennessee. A deal could be announced Friday. I’m working on more details.
— Newy Scruggs (@newyscruggs) December 1, 2017
Hopefully, this deal gets done and ends the stressful coaching search for Tennessee and its fans.
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