Are you ready for some… Grumors?
We’re set to approach the thick of the coaching search rumor season and one name that continuously comes up time after time has been former Oakland Raiders/Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach (and current Monday Night Football analyst) Jon Gruden. The Super Bowl winner has been linked several times to openings around the NFL and in college football but the one job that always seems to be mentioned in connection with has been the Tennessee job.
Well, it just so happens that the Vols have another opening after parting ways with Butch Jones and naturally that means Gruden is going to get asked if he’s interested. ESPN’s Mike and Mike had the coach on Wednesday morning and he somewhat addressed the whole situation during a segment on the show:
“I haven’t talked to anybody. All I really have in my life are my family and football. I’m real sensitive to the coaches who are out there coaching, so I don’t speculate,” said Gruden. “I just love football and I’m trying to hang onto the job I have. I’m very fortunate to be with the people I’m with. I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future but I know this, I’m going to continue to give my best effort to the game.
“I love Monday Night Football, don’t plan on leaving. But you never say never to nothing.”
That last bit is probably going to give even more hope to Vols fans desperately hoping that Gruden will take the job in Knoxville and restore the program to prior glory.
While Tennessee athletic director John Currie will no doubt make an inquiry to see if the coach wants to go through the grinder again — at the college level this time — it sure seems like a pretty long shot he’ll return to coaching with the Vols unless he has a big change of heart over the next few weeks. The folks over at Pro Football Talk have mentioned that a return to the Buccaneers is something being thrown around so even if Gruden wants to get back into coaching, it’s possible UT will find themselves in second place once again.