The search is on for Tennessee’s next football coach, and I’ll be looking at potential candidates in the search until UT athletic director John Currie names Butch Jones’ replacement.
I wasn’t planning on tackling this guy, but CBS Sports/SiriusXM radio analyst Rick Neuheisel got me thinking about a candidate who wasn’t even on my board: Mack Brown. Yes, Neuheisel suggested Mack Brown, who did win a national championship at Texas.
Vols fans on social media were a bit stunned at the suggestion. It certainly would be a big-name hire, but fans didn’t react positively for the most part.
Why Tennessee should hire Mack Brown
Brown is a proven coach, and I seriously doubt the Vols will be able to hire a coach with a national title on his résumé. Brown had strong recruiting ties in the Carolinas and Texas, and both are rich recruiting areas that UT could mine. If Brown could re-cultivate those, that would be a strength.
Brown would bring some integrity to UT, which is needed after some of Jones’ antics have come to light. And he’s from Cookeville, Tenn., so he should understand what Tennessee football means to the state.
Why Tennessee shouldn’t hire Mack Brown
Brown is 66. Not to be an ageist here, but that’s getting up there. How long could the Vols expect him to be at the helm?
In addition, it’s arguable that Brown should be considered an elite coach. Would he have that national title if not for Vince Young’s incredible performance against USC for the 2005 national championship? Probably not.
Why Tennessee can hire Mack Brown
I’m not sure if Brown wants to coach again. If he does, Tennessee would be able to woo him out of broadcasting.
Why Tennessee can’t hire Mack Brown
Perhaps he just doesn’t want to coach anymore, but I’d bet if he was really a target, UT could land him.
With all respect to Neuheisel, I don’t think Brown is a good fit for the Vols.
(You can follow Dave Hooker on Twitter @TheDaveHooker)
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