According to ESPN.com SEC blogger Chris Low, Louisville head coach Charlie Strong “has emerged as the front-runner to be the next head coach at Tennessee.” Low stressed in his report that nothing has been finalized, and Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich has already gone on record publicly as stating that he would do whatever it takes to retain Strong, up to and including making him the highest-paid head coach at the FBS level.
That honor currently belongs to Alabama’s Nick Saban at nearly $5.5 million in 2012.
Strong has been connect to numerous vacancies in the past month, including the one at Auburn that will be filled by Gus Malzahn. In the wake of that speculation in late November, what was described as an angry Strong vehemently denied the rumors to several media out lets.
“I didn’t interview with Auburn, I have a job,” the coach said at the time.
Less than a week later, Strong was asked Monday about the speculation still surrounding him and his coaching future.
“I will say that at the right time,” Strong said in answering the question of whether he will be the coach at Louisville next season.
Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy has also been connected to the UT job.