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Coaching Search Update

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Content provided by Vanderbilt Sports Line.

Mr.SEC.com has a great recap on the state of play in the Vanderbilt coaching search. The search for a new head football coach run by Vice Chancellor Williams has been a model from which future searches will be run in college (if Williams ever decides to run a seminar, I’d recommend Tennessee’s Athletic Director Mike Hamilton attend. Biddle and Climer can chip in for the registration fee). According to the Mr. SEC report and Jeff Lockridge’s Tennessean piece in yesterday’s paper, the remaining candidates are: Tulsa Coach Todd Graham, Nebraska offensive coordinator Shawn Watson, Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin, Michigan State offensive coordinator Don Treadwell and Wisconsin defensive coordinator Dave Doeren. Of these 5 supposed candidates, only 1 is a head coach, 3 are offensive coordinators, and 1 is a defensive coordinator. Notably, 2 of the candidates come from the Big Ten, with 1 from the ACC, Big 12 (although soon to be member of the Big 10), and C-USA. The SEC does not have a representative according to the lists that are out there. According to Mr. SEC there are still people in Nashville who say Randy Shannon might not be completely off the list at this point, although FootballScoop.com says: “[Kentucky Head Coach] Joker Phillips is interested in hiring Randy Shannon to run the Kentucky defense.”

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Is David Williams Softening the Ground for a Coaching Change?

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Content provided by Vanderbilt Sports Line.

Jeff Lockridge’s piece in today’s Tennessean is incredibly interesting, especially in light of the reports that surfaced last weekend when Vanderbilt was getting throttled by Florida. Vice Chancellor David Williams talks about his displeasure with the Commodores’ performance this season. That, however, is not the story. Williams cites lack of competitiveness as perhaps the most disappointing aspect of this season. I couldn’t agree more. Consider this: between 2005-2009 Vanderbilt lost 9 games by 21 points or more; this season, the Commodores have lost 4 games by 3 touchdowns or more (and there’s still 3 games left to play). I get that 3 of the 9 21+ point losses were last season, but somehow this season feels worse

I am on record as being completely in the tank for David Williams. I think he has done a fantastic job spearheading Vanderbilt athletics and that the Commodores, as an athletic program are in better shape now than when I started in 2001. And despite this criticism he has taken in the comments section here and on other Vanderbilt sites, this article says to me not only that he’s listening, but that he also gets its. As Williams says, “There’s losing and there’s losing.” This years losses have been of the particularly bitter variety.

Williams admits the last 3 games will be important in evaluating Coach Caldwell and his staff. Vice Chancellor Williams concludes with this: “You want to be fair [to Coach Caldwell]. But I’m committed to making this program competitive. And we’ll do what we need to do to make that happen.” Vanderbilt fans can’t ask for more.

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