The Tennessee coaching search has seemingly hit the proverbial “reset button” following the transition from John Currie to Phillip Fulmer in the Vols athletic director role on Friday.
As Monday morning rolled around, where the Vols might go next with the coaching coach search again became a topic of conversation after a relatively quiet weekend on that front. After all, conference championships and bowl selections ruled the day on Saturday and Sunday.
SEC Country’s Mike Griffith delivered the latest scoop during the Monday edition of the Tennessee podcast, including discussion on the viability of names such as former LSU coach Les Miles and Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele.
Sports Illustrated’s Bruce Feldman also brought a couple of names to the table on Monday morning, citing “folks close to Phil Fulmer” as “big believers” in Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables and SMU coach Chad Morris.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) December 4, 2017
Both guys are names Griffith and others have combed over previously as potential candidates for the Vols, but to learn that Fulmer’s inner circle may favor those two does add a new element to the situation.
Venables will be coaching the Tigers defense in the upcoming College Football Playoff as Dabo Swinney’s team looks to defend its national title. Morris just completed his first winning season (7-5) in Year 3 of a massive rebuild project at SMU.
Tennessee is on Day 22 of a coaching search that seemingly began with names like Jon Gruden and Dan Mullen, almost settled on Greg Schiano, and then flew through Mike Gundy, Jeff Brohm, Dave Doeren and Mike Leach before Currie’s dismissal.
Fulmer indicated that some names that were previously mentioned could again become candidates, but the names that are floating out there at the moment seem to be different than the ones often mentioned earlier in the search.