When the coaching carousel awoke from its nearly 11-month slumber and slowly began churning its gears a couple of weeks ago, Cincinnati coach Butch Jones was not among the more popular names being thrown into the mix in hopes that it would stick somewhere.
But now that the carousel has picked up some momentum, so has Jones’ name. Bill Koch of the Cincinnati Enquirer confirms that Purdue has “a strong interest” in Jones. It’s been rumored over the past day or two that the Boilermakers were interested in Jones, now in his third year as the Bearcats’ head coach.
Among the chief concerns for Purdue — if the Boilermakers are in fact attempting to land Jones — would be a possible contract extension from UC (which the university has not confirmed) and Jones’ ability to grow a handsome mustache.
That’s where Colorado comes in, where stylish upper lip hair may be preferred but not required. Woody Paige of the Denver Post reports that the Buffs have also expressed interest in Jones. Colorado athletic director Mike Bohn declined to discuss candidates, but did tell the Post this week had a particular candidate in mind. Former Kansas coach Mark Mangino has already taken his name out of consideration.
Cincinnati has not commented on the possibility of Jones leaving for another job, and it’s likely no one will until Jones takes another job. If he takes another job. So far there’s been no real indication that Jones is reciprocating the interest some schools are reportedly showing him. But Jones’ name is (rightfully) getting more attention as the coaching silly season (see: Jon Gruden, all the time) rolls along.