With the coaching carousel set to hit full speed over the next few weeks, Vanderbilt is making sure its coach, James Franklin, is nowhere to be found in the rumor mill.
The university announced Sunday night that it had agreed to a “long-term” deal with Franklin, who is finishing his second year as the Commodores’ head coach. The details of the agreement have not been disclosed. Vanderbilt, a private university, is not required to disclose those details.
“This really is about our kids and our players,” Franklin said. “I made a promise to them, and we made a promise to them as a staff, that they could come to Vanderbilt and chase all their dreams, their wildest dreams, at the highest level.
“This is about continuing to make progress, continuing to take steps in the right direction, so we can build a program for the long haul that people can be very, very proud of.”
The deal has apparently been in the works for the past couple of weeks and was not a reaction to a specific rumor about Franklin leaving for another job. Franklin’s name came up in connection to the open North Carolina State vacancy, but it eventually went to Northern Illinois’ Dave Doeren.
“This wasn’t really about putting more money in James’ pocket, but James has been a tremendous success here, and by any rights he does deserve a raise anyway,” said athletic director David Williams. “So, yeah, I think we’ve tried to put him in a position where he will be very happy and very comfortable here in Nashville.”
Vanderbilt went 8-4 this season and will play in the Music City Bowl against NC State. The program looks to be headed in the right direction under Franklin, and with facility improvements, the university is making a clear commitment to its football program.
(Hat tip: USA Today)