03
Nov
08

Tennessee Short list

With thanks to Jimmy Cracked Corndawg:

According to Volquest, the long list to replace Phat Phil:

Lane Kiffin, Will Muschamp, Jim Grobe, Brian Kelly, Tim Brewster, Gary Patterson, Turner Gill, Mike Leach, Doug Marrone, Charlie Strong and Mike Locksley.
(Of course, Kiffin and Muschamp are also on Clemson’s list and Leach will be on everyone’s list.)

Chavis won’t be the next guy at UT. If Fulmer’s out, then his staff won’t be far behind. AD’s and powers-that-be think of them as part of the problem. Fulmer’s hiring was different. It wasn’t that Johnny Majors was doing that bad; he could have lasted a while longer if it weren’t for circumstances. When he got sick, UT realized Phat Phil was the real deal, so they fired Majors so as not to lose their diamond in the rough.

David Cutcliffe, meanwhile, who is not being mentioned for the post, is a different story. He isn’t on board the sinking ship and is a name everyone associates only with the good times at UT. That’s an advantage Chavis doesn’t have.

Jimmy is a long time friend and a member of the traditional media near home in Georgia.  He and I chatted about this today and he posted the above in the comments of the prior post.  A couple of thoughts, in no particular order:

  1. Mike Leach isn’t leaving Lubbock to go to Knoxville.  Texas Tech is about to give him half of West Texas, rename it Leachistan and make every day International Talk Like a Pirate Day.  Even if they don’t, why not go to Washington, where they have very good facilities, with all kinds of upside potential without the expectations of Tennessee, and a real navy.  Plus, UW would pay him the same money as Tennessee or TTU.  Wait, the UW job won’t be open because……
  2. Lane Kiffin is going to UW.  I don’t know that for sure, but I sure know he is a west coast guy, with west coast contacts and west coast attitudes.  Not that there is anything wrong with that.
  3. I love Will Muschamp.  I know he will be a head coach in the next two years somewhere.  I would put my money on Auburn, if I bet on such things.
  4. I look at Tennessee going after a coach with a proven record of success somewhere.  I don’t know if Chris Hatcher has the success they are looking for, but Mickey Matthews might. Chuck Martin certainly does.  If not, Charlie Strong would be a great pick up and the one that would make me the most nervous of the names on the Volquest list, as a Georgia fan.
  5. That goes for Jim Grobe as well, and he has been recruiting in Tennessee’s back yard quite well.

Just a few random thoughts for a Monday night.

PS. So it wasn’t as classy as I thought it might be.

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2 Responses to “Tennessee Short list”


  1. 1 Jimmy Cracked Corndawg
    November 3, 2008 at 10:44 pm

    Lane Kiffin to Washington makes more sense than Kiffin to Clemson or Tennessee.

    I also like the idea of Hatcher to UT…he’s folksy; a young Bobby Bowden and would clean up in recruiting.

    As for Leach, sure he’s loving it in Lubbock right now, but Lubbock is no Austin. He doesn’t need to be too coy and overstay like Gary Barnett did at Northwestern. To think, that buffoon could have had the Georgia job if he wanted it. Hallelujah, he didn’t.

    At the same point, I see Greg Schiano and Jim Grobe getting dangerously close to pulling a Barnett. Passing over Florida to stay at Oklahoma makes sense for Bob Stoops. I can even see why Schiano gave Miami the finger. But don’t tell me those guys would be happy staying in Hicksville forever if a big-boy program came calling. And make no mistake about it, they might be making noise right now where they’re at, but it ain’t going to last.

    Leach, at a big-boy, Big 12 school makes sense…maybe even Big 10 at some point. He just strikes me as the kind who doesn’t give a crap if he makes it big or not. For that matter, he strikes me as the kind of guy that might just grow a goatee.

    And I think he’s just crazy enough to do it.

  2. 2 Oshea2002
    November 3, 2008 at 11:02 pm

    I dunno on Kiffin. I think he could ultimately end up at UW, it’s maybe even likely, but if he was their #1 guy, he’d have been interviewed and hired. Why waste a recruiting class if you can get your guy in now? I don’t know what kind of say Don James has, but if it’s alot, he’ll push for Pinkel or Mizzou’s OC. Kiffin’s got ties everywhere, his dad coaches in Tampa, he’s from Minnesota, he coached at Jacksonville, and was at SC for a while. He REALLY wanted the Arkansas job. I think lack of southern ties hurts less at Tennessee then most SEC schools, since they recruit nationally anyway. That said, there are better candidates. I agree that Kiffin to Clemson makes no sense, only a certain kind of guy can win there and it’s not him.

    Leach could be good at a big school, but he’d have to hire a great staff. He’s not known as the best recruiter. Winning with a gimmick offense with basically zero NFL guys year after year isn’t gonna win anything in the SEC. He could actually do better at a Washington or a Big 10 school, IMO.

    I like Grobe and Gill, both have proven they can win at terrible schools, and upgrade the talent base. I really thought Washington State blew it by not hiring Turner Gill. Locksley would be strictly a recruiting hire, I have no idea how you go from offensive coordinator of a middling Big 10 program to head coach of Tennessee.

    I’d do what Bama did once Rich Rod bailed out – identify your guy and basically refuse to not let him accept the job. I’m not sure who that is, but it’d be Butch Davis for me.


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A Georgia Dawg in the Mid-West alone with his thoughts.

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