Lovie Should Consider Tennessee Job
There is one thing that the Tennessee football program and Lovie Smith have in common right now: they are both under fire. With Lane Kiffin jumping ship to head to USC and all the insanity that has swirled around him and the Vols program over the last 14 months, it should come as no surprise that they are reaching out to some of the people they reached out to in the past before hiring Kiffin. Apparently one of those people was Lovie Smith, although back in 2008 he quickly declined the job offer.
That brings us to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, who seems to think Lovie should consider taking the job now that it has re-opened:
Frankly, it might be in everyone’s best interests for Smith to pursue the opportunity, unless he has no interest in leading a college program. The Bears undoubtedly would have cleaned house at Halas Hall but for the buyout obligations to Smith and G.M. Jerry Angelo. With Smith’s ability to stick around for 2011 riding on the performance of quarterback Jay Cutler and mounting uncertainty regarding a work stoppage after next season, heading to Knoxville makes plenty of sense, especially if his compensation from the Volunteers would be enhanced by a partial buyout from the Bears.
In all honesty, I do not know how good a college coach Lovie would be. It seems like he would be a good recruiter, which is about 75% of the job of a college football coach. His stoic demeanor and respect-inspiring personality would serve him well. If he thinks he could handle that part of the job, why not take the position? Everyone knows he is going to be on the hot seat all this coming year and it’s not like the Bears prospects this season are looking all that good.
On the Bears end, it would be a godsend. Although Phillips and McCaskey have come out and said they support Angelo and Lovie and its not about money, the reality of the situation is too glaring to ignore. With the almost inevitable work stoppage after 2010, getting Lovie’s multi-year deal off the books would be ideal.
Will this happen? Probably not since Lovie has given no indication that he is interested in any other job than the one he has. Regardless the possibility is there and Coach Smith should seriously consider it.