Any time a college football program of significance opens up a coaching vacancy it has become routine for college football writers to cook up a quick and hasty list of potential candidates for the job. Often times these lists will include some of the same big name dream targets, while other parts of the candidate field will focus on any coach with at least some prior ties to the university.
On Sunday, when Miami fired Al Golden to open up its position of head coach, there were many names that were at the standby position for multiple coaching candidate lists. Greg Schiano and Butch Davis were among the most popular (and Davis has already expressed his interest). One name that seemed to feel out of place was Penn State head coach James Franklin. Franklin was among a list of 12 potential targets for Miami written by Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com.
“You keep hearing rumblings that Franklin would be interested,” Dodd suggested. “Franklin has no ties to Miami but probably would have a better chance to win in the ACC Coastal rather than an increasingly brutal Big Ten East.”
Today, with Franklin making his regular rounds with the media, Franklin was forced to respond to his name being attached to other jobs. Coaches will always say what sounds best for the program, players and fans, but needless to say Franklin showed no visible signs of being interested in the job down south.
“Let me say this… I don’t like it,” stated Franklin (per Lions 247). “I think it causes a distraction for our team, a distraction for Penn State. And I have no idea where it’s coming from whatsoever.
“My family has sacrificed, I’ve worked my ass off to get to Penn State. To get here. And this is where I want to be.”
Franklin was not alone in having to address the Miami job. Texas head coach Charlie Strong was also asked about it on Monday after his name appeared in a similar commentary on ESPN.com. It was the first question posed to him at his Monday press conference.
“No, I’m not going to Miami,” Strong replied, according to The Dallas Morning News. “I have a great job. I’ve got to get things done here.”
Until Miami finds its next head coach, who knows how many more times these coaches will have to address the topic, and who knows how many other coaches will have to face similar questions.