UPDATED 2:37 p.m. ET: Rutgers athletic director Tim Pernetti will address the media at 4:30 p.m. ET this afternoon and discuss the direction the football program will move in regards to the head coaching position. Two unnamed players will be available for comment as well.
UPDATED 12:57 p.m. ET: A team meeting has been called for 2 p.m. ET Thursday afternoon, at which point the Scarlet Knight players will officially be informed that Greg Schiano is leaving the program for an NFL job. Schiano is also expected to meet with his coaching staff prior to that meeting.
The school is expected to issue a press release confirming Schiano’s departure at some point shortly after that team meeting.
UPDATED 10:54 a.m. ET: There is apparently a lot of meat to the Greg Schiano speculation.
Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that “Tampa Bay plans to hire Rutgers coach Greg Schiano as the next Buccaneers head coach. Two sides trying to finalize contract.”
CFT has reached out to Rutgers for a comment on the growing speculation, but thus far the school has declined to respond.
This apparently wasn’t Schiano’s first NFL flirtation this offseason; according to Schefter, Schiano interviewed with the St. Louis Rams and was a finalist for the job that ultimately went to Jeff Fisher.
Reports emerged over the weekend that Chip Kelly had decided to leave Oregon to take the head coaching job with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
A couple of days after Kelly reversed course, another program at the collegiate level could find itself fending off advances toward their head coach from the same professional organization.
On its Twitter account Thursday morning, WDAE radio in Tampa wrote that it’s “[h]earing whispers that the #Bucs coach could be a college coach.” Subsequent to that, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times tweeted that “620 WDAE in Tampa reporting that Rutgers coach Greg Schiano is possibly going to be the Bucs new head coach.”
“I have no confirmation of Rutgers coach Greg Schiano becoming the Bucs next head coach. Is it possible? Anything is,” Stroud wrote in a follow-up tweet.
Jason LaConfora of the NFL Network subsequently confirmed that report, tweeting that Schiano “is under consideration for Bucs job.”
Schiano has been the head coach of the Scarlet Knights since 2001, going 68-67 in his 11 seasons at the school. His last job at the professional level was in 1998, serving as a defensive assistant with the Chicago Bears for three years.
Following the dismissal of Joe Paterno, Schiano, who coached at the school prior to his time with the Bears, was mentioned as a likely target of the school; he ultimately denied any interest in the opening. He was also connected to the Illinois vacancy, but those rumors were swiftly knocked down.
Suffice to say, the school has no comment on the latest round of speculation regarding their coach. As it’s now six days until National Signing Day, they might want to change that tack if there is no truth to the rumors at all.