Tennessee finally may have found their next head coach.
Cincinnati head coach Butch Jones is the latest coach to get an offer from the Volunteers.
The coaching search for Tennessee has come under fire by local and national media after being turned down by three candidates in the past few days. The school has been shooting for big names and come up empty to this point and Jones is the fourth coach to have been offered the job.
Louisville head coach Charlie Strong and Oklahoma State head coach were the latest to rebuff athletic director Dave Hart in his quest to find the replacement for Derek Dooley that started with Jon Gruden turning down the school’s offer to leave the Monday Night Football booth.
Jones earned a share of the Big East title this week for the second straight year and has won 19 games over the past two seasons for the Bearcats, but could leave the program one year after signing a three-year extension.
One of the hottest coaching candidates in the country, Jones has previously drawn interest from Kentucky, Purdue and Colorado but either turned down their offers or the school went in a different direction.
However, Tennessee is a job far superior to those aforementioned jobs and perhaps this is the job he ultimately takes.
Would Tennessee fans be happy with this selection?
I think many fans have grown frustrated with Hart’s process finding the next coach and had their sights set on landing a higher profile name at coach.
One thing Vols fans don’t want to hear is that Dooley once beat a Jones coached team by three touchdowns.
Jones is a quality coach, and has a 2-1 record over Strong–who many thought would have been a great hire for the Volunteers–whether he can compete with the elite in the SEC after years in the Big East is a question we may have an answer to next fall.
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Patrick is a diehard Chicago sports and an avid college football fan, and the host of “The Wake-up Call,” a weekly sports show on Sportstownchicago.com airing live on Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.