Nearly five weeks after ridding themselves of Chris Ash, Rutgers’ search for a replacement has kicked into gear.
Citing a person with knowledge of the situation, nj.com reported overnight that Butch Jones interviewed for the RU job in Piscataway Friday. Jones is the first known coach to interview for the vacancy.
The 51-year-old Jones, whose first coaching job at the collegiate level came as a graduate assistant at Rutgers from 1990-92, parlayed successful stints as the head coach at Central Michigan (2007-09) and Cincinnati (2010-12) into the same job at Tennessee. While Jones put up a pair of 9-4 seasons in Years 3 and 4 on Rocky Top, a 4-6 record through 10 games of his fifth season proved to be the end of his tenure as he was fired by the Volunteers in November of 2017.
Jones ended up going 34-27 overall and 14-24 in SEC while at Tennessee. Overall, he’s 84-54 as a head coach.
Three months after his dismissal, Jones was connected to an off-field job at Alabama; Jones took a job as an offensive analyst for the Crimson Tide in March of 2018, a job he’s held ever since.
Rutgers, incidentally, has won a combined 13 games — and lost 43 — since the start of the 2015 season. That woebegone football program could do a helluva lot worse than an experienced head coach like Jones.